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Information Literacy - For Faculty  

The importance of information literacy in the Community College.
Last Updated: Oct 20, 2014 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

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Information Literacy and the BCC Student

In order to successfully complete their studies, further their academic careers, and become a member of the global economy, it is important for BCC students to be information literate.  Information literacy is not only a required educational component of BCC's accreditation through NEASC, it has also been deemed "a crucial part of education" in a proclamation by Governor PatrickAn information literate Berkshire Community College graduate should be able to :

  • Recognize when information is needed 
  • Identify the type and extent of information needed 
  • Locate and access information effectively and efficiently
  • Evaluate information critically, determining whether it is authoritative and accurate, and that it presents the appropriate currency, and scope.
  • Incorporate information into one’s knowledge base
  • Effectively use and synthesize that information.
  • Understand, legal, and social and ethical issues related to information in its various formats.

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    Information Literacy - What It Is.

    The National Forum on Information Literacy, an international collaborative of national and international organizations originally established by the American Library Association (ALA), defines Information Literacy as “the ability to know when there is a need for information, to identify, locate, synthesize, evaluate, and use effectively that information for the issue or problem at hand.. Simply put, information literacy is the key competency needed to enhance K-16 academic performance, engage patient personal responsibility, improve workplace performance and productivity, and compete effectively in a dynamically evolving world marketplace."

    The Association Of College And Research Libraries (ACRL), a division of the ALA, has created an information guide and framework comprised of  five standards and twenty-two performance indicators which addresses Information Literacy in Higher Education.  In their complete form, the standards list a range of outcomes that "serve as guidelines for faculty, librarians, and others in developing local methods for measuring student learning in the context of an institution’s unique mission."  

    The following is an abbreviated form of these standards:  (For the complete version, click  ACRL's Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education)

    ACRL Standards    

    Standard One: Determine the nature and extent of the information needed.

    Standard Two: Access needed information effectively and efficiently.

    Standard Three: Evaluate information and its sources critically and incorporate selected information into knowledge base and value system.

    Standard Four: Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose.

    Standard Five: Understand ethical, legal, and socio-economic issues surrounding the use of information. Use information legally and ethically.


      American Association of Community Colleges Position Statement for Information Literacy

      " Information literacy, which encompasses information fluency and information technology mastery, is critical to success in higher education and lifelong learning..."


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