Wikipedia in higher education: Changes in perceived value through content contribution

Authors : Joan Soler-Adillon, Dragana Pavlovic

Wikipedia is a widely used resource by university students, but it is not necessarily regarded as being reliable and trustworthy by them, nor is it seen as a context in which to make content contributions.

This paper presents a teaching and research project that consisted in having students edit or create Wikipedia articles and testing whether or not this experience changed their perceived value of the platform. We conducted our experience at Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Barcelona, Spain) and University of Niš (Niš, Serbia) with a total number of 240 students.

These students edited articles and answered two questionnaires, one before and one after the exercise. We compared the pre and post experience answers to the questionnaires with a series of paired samples ttests, through which our data showed that students did significantly change their perception of reliability and usefulness, and of likeliness of finding false information on Wikipedia.

Their appreciation of the task of writing Wikipedia articles, in terms of it being interesting and challenge also increased. They did not significantly change, however, their judgement on the social value of the platform, neither in the university nor in the general context.

In addition, the open questions and informal feedback allowed us to gather valuable insights towards the evaluation of the overall experience.

URL : Wikipedia in higher education: Changes in perceived value through content contribution

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Just Curious: How Can Academic Libraries Incite Curiosity to Promote Science Literacy?

Author : Siu Hong Yu

Based on a Bright Young Minds webinar given on February 7, 2017, this paper shows the importance of nurturing curiosity in students as an integral part of information literacy (IL) and science literacy. There are obvious parallels between « Research as Inquiry, » as described in the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education (2016) and scientific inquiry.

In both cases, curiosity is the fuel that drives information gathering and the pursuit of new knowledge. This paper discusses three pedagogical strategies to help information literacy librarians incite curiosity in students and promote scientific literacy.

Bright Young Minds is a webinar series hosted by the Ontario Library Association’s Education Institute. It provides a platform for MLIS students and recent graduates to share their research and to foster connections between academic schools and information professionals.

The webinar and this subsequent article grew out of an MLIS project exploring the concept of curiosity and its application in promoting scientific literacy in academic libraries. I draw on my dual experiences as both a Chemistry graduate student and participant in IL sessions, and as a recent MLIS graduate and IL instructor.

URL : Just Curious: How Can Academic Libraries Incite Curiosity to Promote Science Literacy?

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Library and Information Sciences : Trends and Research

« This book explores the development, trends and research of library and information sciences (LIS) in the digital age. Inside, readers will find research and case studies written by LIS experts, educators and theorists, most of whom have visited China, delivered presentations there and drafted their articles based on feedback they received. As a result, readers will discover the LIS issues and concerns that China and the international community have in common.

The book first introduces the opportunities and challenges faced by the library and information literacy profession and discusses the key role of librarians in the future of information literacy education. Next, it covers trends in LIS education by examining the vision of the iSchool movement and detailing its practice in Syracuse University.

The book then covers issues in information seeking and retrieval by showing how visual data mining technology can be used to detect the relationship and pattern between terms on the Q&A of a social media site. It also includes a case study regarding tracing information seeking behavior and usage on a multimedia website.

Next, the book stresses the importance of building an academic accreditation framework for scientific datasets, explores the relationship between bibliometrics and university rankings, and details the birth and development of East Asian Libraries in North America.

Overall, the book offers readers insight into the changing nature of LIS, including the electronic dissemination of information, the impact of the Internet on libraries, the changing responsibilities of library professionals, the new paradigm for evaluating information, and characteristics and functions of today’s library personnel. »


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Information literacy standards and the World Wide Web: results from a student survey on evaluation of Internet information sources

« Introduction. This paper aims to determine how appropriate information literacy instruction is for preparing students for these unmediated searches using commercial search engines and the Web.
Method. A survey was designed using the 2000 Association of College and Research Libraries literacy competency standards for higher education. Survey questions examined how subjects perceived the source evaluation criteria of reliability, validity, accuracy, authority, timeliness and point of view or bias.
Analysis. Quantitative analysis was carried out on the data collected from 389 survey respondents who answered twenty-seven multiple choice questions concerning their information search practice and their evaluations of information sources.
Results. Subjects primarily use Google as a research source for academic work and appear to be confused about how to determine the author of a source and how to determine the qualifications of the author. About half of the subjects indicated they may not be able to determine the author of an Internet source yet consider it possible to determine the objectivity of the source.
Conclusions. Information literacy instruction on source evaluation criteria may need to be reexamined in relation to the various information sources available today. More effective information literacy instruction methods which address the issues identified in this study may need to be implemented. »


Information Literacy in Open Courses

« Open education is changing the landscape of higher education.  There are many aspects to the open education movement and the authors of this paper focus on open courses.  Librarians and educators who teach information literacy must adapt their instruction to courses that are open, instead of using the same strategies that are employed in traditional education or distance education settings.  In this paper, the authors discuss the theories of connectivism and social learning theory and how the both theories apply to information literacy and its foray into open courses.  Additionally, the concept of lifelong learning is crucial to open education and its close ties to information literacy are examined.  The authors conclude by discussing the content of information literacy courses in an open environment. »

URL : Information Literacy in Open Courses

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Public Access and Use of Health Research: An Exploratory Study of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Public Access Policy Using Interviews and Surveys of Health Personnel

« Background: In 2008, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Public Access Policy mandated open access for publications resulting from NIH funding (following a 12-month embargo). The large increase in access to research that will take place in the years to come has potential implications for evidence-based practice (EBP) and lifelong learning for health personnel.

Objective: This study assesses health personnel’s current use of research to establish whether grounds exist for expecting, preparing for, and further measuring the impact of the NIH Public Access Policy on health care quality and outcomes in light of time constraints and existing information resources.

Methods: In all, 14 interviews and 90 surveys of health personnel were conducted at a community-based clinic and an independent teaching hospital in 2010. Health personnel were asked about the research sources they consulted and the frequency with which they consulted these sources, as well as motivation and search strategies used to locate articles, perceived level of access to research, and knowledge of the NIH Public Access Policy.

Results: In terms of current access to health information, 65% (57/88) of the health personnel reported being satisfied, while 32% (28/88) reported feeling underserved. Among the sources health personnel reported that they relied upon and consulted weekly, 83% (73/88) reported turning to colleagues, 77% (67/87) reported using synthesized information resources (eg, UpToDate and Cochrane Systematic Reviews), while 32% (28/88) reported that they consulted primary research literature. The dominant resources health personnel consulted when actively searching for health information were Google and Wikipedia, while 27% (24/89) reported using PubMed weekly. The most prevalent reason given for accessing research on a weekly basis, reported by 35% (31/88) of survey respondents, was to help a specific patient, while 31% (26/84) were motivated by general interest in research.

Conclusions: The results provide grounds for expecting the NIH Public Access Policy to have a positive impact on EBP and health care more generally given that between a quarter and a third of participants in this study (1) frequently accessed research literature, (2) expressed an interest in having greater access, and (3) were aware of the policy and expect it to have an impact on their accessing research literature in the future. Results also indicate the value of promoting a greater awareness of the NIH policy, providing training and education in the location and use of the literature, and continuing improvements in the organization of biomedical research for health personnel use. »


Are you FIT for FILE?

« The course Facilitating Information Literacy Education (FILE) was commissioned by the London Health Libraries ( as part of its Learning Support Programme and developed by the School of Information Management at London Metropolitan University as a continuing professional development (CPD) course which is also accredited as a postgraduate module. The main aim of the course is to equip information practitioners working in the health sector with the competence and confidence required to facilitate information literacy education. The provision of FILE is based on a blended provision involving face-to-face intensive sessions and e-learning activities supported by a dedicated webpage ( and a blog ( The website is designed to host the learning resources that the participants produce as part of a professional portfolio assessed during the course. This is complemented by the blog employed to foster reflective learning and peer-based evaluation. The long term goal of FILE is to create a web-based repository of information literacy resources (drawn from the existing resources which are customised by the participants as well as the materials they develop as part of the portfolio). The underlying aim is to encourage effective sharing of good practice amongst the authors and enable further dissemination of information literacy education to a wider health-information community of practice. The main aim of the paper is to present an overall evaluation of the participants’ testimonials on their professional development as facilitators of Information Literacy Education following the delivery of the course in January to March 2007. As the title suggests we shall explore the impact of FILE on its participants in terms of developing fluency in Information Technology (FIT) to enhance their Information Literacy practice by identifying and addressing the needs of a diverse user population within the health care sector (including home care workers, NHS support staff, clinical researchers, and perioperative staff ranging from nurses to surgeons). Examples of IT competences presented here include the use of PowerPoint to maximise communication with the users, the use of online surveys to support effective evaluative strategies and of the blog to promote peer-based evaluation and reflective practice by the FILE participants. »