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Entries by Fiona laing (24)

Tuesday
Apr252017

Inquiry into fake news: the CILIP ILG response

Reposted from CILIP ILG

Stéphane Goldstein, Advocacy and Outreach Officer of the CILIP Information Literacy Group and Executive Director of InformAll, outlines our recent submission to the inquiry into fake news that is being conducted by the House of Commons Select Committee on Culture, Media and Sport.

In January 2017, the House of Commons Select Committee on Culture, Media and Sport launched an inquiry into fake news. As is usual with such inquiries, the Committee invited submissions from interested parties, prior to compiling a report – which we hope will be published later in the year.

CILIP Information Literacy GroupThe CILIP Information Literacy Group, in collaboration with InformAll, submitted a response in March. Not only is this inquiry timely, but it is directly relevant to information literacy. Indeed, one of the questions posed by the Committee in its call for submissions was ‘How can we educate people in how to assess and use different sources of news?’.InformAll

In April, the Committee published our response (the list of the nearly eighty submissions made by a range of other bodies and individuals is also available here. Amongst the other respondents are Google, Facebook, the Guardian, the BBC, Research Libraries UK and the Open University).

These are the highlights of some of the key points that we raised in our submission:

  • Much of the current debate in this area is articulated around what Google, Facebook and others do to limit the spread of fake news, for instance through changes in their algorithms.  But although these often technological approaches are undoubtedly important, they fail to address the place and responsibility of users as consumers, creators and sharers of information. So the question we are posing is how people’s fundamental beliefs and commitments have an impact on the way that they relate to information and news; and what might be done to help them become more judicious in their approach to information and mis-information. This is where information literacy comes in.
  • In confronting fake news and misinformation, the search for evidence – founded on enquiry, questioning and research – is more relevant than the notion of truth. Truth is a subjective concept, and is not a helpful term when trying to address the challenge of fake news; it follows that the expression ‘post-truth’ is equally unhelpful.
  • A major part of any solution is a greater emphasis on the teaching of critical thinking, associated with information and digital literacy, in secondary schools – something that does not currently feature prominently in the curriculum. School students’ attitudes and practices towards information are often sorely lacking, but there is evidence to suggest a more discerning mindset can be fostered, given the right sort of interventions.
  • By and large, public policy in the UK does not properly address information literacy, and the recently-published UK Digital Strategy, in spite of its thinking on digital skills, conspicuously fails to touch on how to foster more critical and questioning approaches to online information.
  • Psychology can go a long way to explaining people’s propensity to believe fake news, and people’s powerful attachments to what they believe to be true can breed attitudes that are very resistant to evidence and facts. Cognitive factors are important in determining attitudes to information.

We recommend keeping an eye on the Select Committee’s webpages to monitor progress with their inquiry.

Monday
Apr102017

Fake news and the librarian's duty of care

From Infomation Today Europe 31st March 2017

Tuesday
Mar282017

DIGITAL LITERACY

The Literacy Matters! portal is for teachers, librarians and researchers to use advocacy and research purposes on the importance of literacy and reading. It has been developed to support the Literacy Matters! campaign, devised and launched by the Literacy and Reading Section, the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA). The campaign is part of the United Nations 2030 Agenda: Sustainable Development Goals to support the development of literacy for all peoples across all nations.

"The meaning of the term digital literacy is still being hotly debated. The articles below include a number of definitions. Some are based on research, while others come from industry. While it is important to consider authority and veracity when information is being authored by an industry or company that has a vested interest in the uptake of technology, it is also important to be aware of what this sector is promoting. For the same reason articles from popular news media have also been included".
 

Wednesday
Mar152017

ACRL white paper on global perspectives on information literacy

The Student Learning & Information Literacy (SLILC) committee of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) has today published a white paper on global perspectives on information literacy.

The white paper contains chapters written by practitioners and researchers from around the globe on their insights and practice. View more details, and download the free white paper.

The first in a series of programming around the white paper was held recently. This forum brought together Merinda Kaye Hensley, chair of the working group who produced the white paper, and Emma Coonan, author of the foreword of the white paper. View a recording of the forum.

Monday
Mar132017

IPRA 2017 – Winner – Dr Jane Secker

Dr Jane Secker was nominated by Emily Shields. She is the winner of the Informed Peer Recognition Award 2017, recognising her significant contribution and her activities as an exceptional information professional.

The text of her nomination is below.

"I would like to nominate Jane Secker, Copyright and Digital Literacy Advisor at the London School of Economics for an award for her commitment to the promotion and development of information literacy (IL) and copyright. She has worked tirelessly to raise the profile of these vital areas of librarianship building networks and developing relationships wherever possible.


In 2004, Jane, with a like-minded colleague, set up the LILAC conference. She believed that IL practice was important to share in the library community and grew a small event at LSE into the successful annual conference now a must in librarians’ calendars. Annual feedback proves that such an event boosts IL knowledge and understanding in the community, with delegates feeding this back to their institutions and employers building IL competence and knowledge throughout organisations and communities. All from Jane’s conviction in 2004 that such a conference would be of benefit to the profession and those we engage with.


This involvement in IL advocacy didn’t stop with one conference and over the years Jane’s activism and achievements in this area have been unparalleled. Jane is one of IL’s leading promoters and her belief that being information literate is not only an important life skill but also a fundamental human right is clear in her numerous publications and conference presentations.


As well as being the Copyright Advisor for LSE, Jane has also found time to
Be appointed Editor-in-Chief of the twice yearly Journal of Information Literacy;
Chair the CILIP Information Literacy Group;
Work on a number of projects to promote the use of Open Educational Resources, collaborating with the IL section of UNESCO ;
Win an Arcadia Fellowship at Cambridge University to run a research project on IL and co-write ‘A New Curriculum for IL’ (ANCIL) a much used framework for many IL practitioners;
Co-write ‘Copyright and elearning: a guide for practitioners’;
Develop and champion an initiative with TeenTech, to sponsor an award for 11-16 year olds that recognises excellence in research and information literacy

Her continuing enthusiasm for IL has developed further in recent years as Jane has also focussed on a more specific area, that of copyright. Jane strives to make a traditionally dry topic of copyright fun and engaging. Because of Jane, copyright is now the subject of games and t-shirts as well as more traditional publications and conference talks. Her advocacy for the world of copyright has led to a greater interest within the profession, leading in its turn to better compliance and a better understanding within Higher Education and elsewhere. Her work with the Universities UK / Guild HE Copyright Working Group led to the Copyright Licensing Agency increasing the extent limits from 5% to 10% making life easier for students and academics.

Jane’s commitment to her profession has led to many collaborations and a furthering of understanding within the profession of both IL in general and copyright in particular. She would be a deserving winner of this award."

 

Comments from the judging teams on the nomination are below.

“Clear that Jane Seeker has gone well beyond her job, and started things that are of real and lasting value to the profession and society, and will continue without her input.”

“It was very difficult to decide between these excellent nominations. All three are great examples of what can be accomplished when an individual goes the extra mile. Jane Seeker's prolificacy, however, is utterly inspiring and this person would be a deserved recipient of the 2017 award in return for what is a huge contribution to the profession and beyond.“

Jane Seeker is nominated for this award for her tireless commitment to the promotion of information literacy and copyright. We were extremely impressed by this nomination; in particular, what stood out for us was her willingness to share knowledge and expertise, and the wide-ranging and tangible benefits generated for the profession and for others as a result of her work. We felt unanimously that she met the criteria for the Informed Peer Recognition Award several times over.”

Jane Seeker was selected because her work has reached beyond the profession and has impacted on other areas. It has also highlighted issues to the public and has made what could be considered a "dry and boring" topic, fun and engaging whilst raising important points.”

 

Dr Secker's response to her nomination is below:

"I must thank all the people who've inspired me over the years - Debbi Boden who I set up Lilac with, Emma Coonan who I worked with on A New Curriculum for Information Literacy and Chris Morrison who is my copyright literacy co-researcher, author and games buddy. I also want to thank LSE and all my wonderful colleagues there and the Information Literacy Group Committee who work so hard.

 

Congratulations to Dr Jane Secker on being the first winner of the Informed Peer Recognition Award, as a result of her impressive and wide ranging achievements!