Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Information skills, information literacy

Information skills, information literacy. This article is by Hilary Johnson. It appeared in Library Association Record, December 2001, Vol. 103 (12).

From the site:

Information literacy is therefore explicitly linked to concepts of the 'informed citizen', required for the effective functioning of modern democracies. Increasingly, too, this is a factor in the corporate information sector, with the advent of 'knowledge management' as a vital tool for modern global business.

Within the broader educational literature, there have been explicit links made with critical thinking as well as lifelong learning: '...individuals not only to use information and information technology effectively and adapt to their constant changes but also to think critically about the entire information enterprise and information society'.4

'...information is an "essential commodity for survival" ...[we need to teach people to become] independent and informed information consumers on their way to becoming lifelong learners'.5

We feel strongly that, within higher education, information literacy should include the notion of an individual who is able to contribute to the synthesis of existing information, to develop ideas building on that synthesis and, ultimately, create new knowledge in a particular subject discipline. Stephen Town6 argues that the development of information skills 'enables people at universities, and in their subsequent careers, to turn knowledge into wisdom through effective application', a prime learning outcome for higher education in all its manifestations.

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