Notes to lecturers

Main Contents Page

Before you start

- Definition of IL

- What will you learn?

- Requirements

- Technical issues

- Notes to lecturers

- Acknowledgements

- Bibliography




STEP 4: Legal and ethical USE


Insufficient emphasis is placed on teaching information skills in the curriculum in primary and secondary schools in South Africa. The result is that thousands of students enter higher education without the information-finding and evaluating skills that are required to succeed academically. Furthermore, the inadequacy of school and public libraries in many areas of South Africa, together with the popular view that the Internet provides the ultimate solution to finding information, further exacerbate the serious lack of searching skills among students.

The problem presents itself in the university library daily. Students are often helpless amidst the rich variety of information resources and services. They experience bewilderment and lack confidence because of a lack of conceptual understanding and basic skills to find, evaluate and utilise information correctly, rapidly and appropriately.

This information literacy course was developed to help students. It seeks to provide librarians and lecturers with a tool that will improve their effectiveness in overcoming the information barriers of students. The course proceeds from the point of view of the learner. Because information literacy is a life skill, the course introduces information services and resources beyond the library and beyond typically academic publications.

After workshops were held with librarians and academic development support specialists, the course was designed so that it could be used:

  • primarily as a self-directed learning resource to which students with a need for a basic structured course could be referred.
  • correctively, to help students overcome specific difficulties, by referring them to the appropriate module/step.
  • by lecturers to provide a generic, structured, core course on which to superimpose authentic assignments with the co-objective of teaching information skills.