Searching as Strategic Exploration

For a performance task/ assignment, students will be expected to find evidence to investigate a pseudoscientific claim or conspiracy theory. They will be submitting a two-page paper to their Chemistry professor in which they make a case that either supports the claim or rejects it. They will be expected to use both library and credible online sources for support. The performance task will follow a full 75-minute library instruction session in which students will learn to:construct various search phrases for use in online and library search tools  use certain evaluation criteria (e.g. CRAAP) to assess the credibility of online sources  examine sources for relevance to their research question and search need (specifically, to determine credibility of claims)Throughout the class, an example claim will be used for searches. Either one of the following is recommended:Feng Shui – or the arrangement of furniture according to Chinese philosophy – can positively or negatively impact your wealth, health, happiness, and prosperity.President John F. Kennedy was not assassinated by Lee Harvey Oswald – or his assassination is the result of a conspiracy of various entities and agents. Materials included:The full sequenced instruction outline for the face-to-face library instruction session. The assignment prompt for the performance task. CRAAP handout. 
Contributor: Cristy Moran
Resource Type(s): ActivityAssignment Prompt
Discipline(s): Interdisciplinary
License Assigned: CC Attribution License CC-BY
This is a short, engaging activity suitable for learners of all levels. In it, students evaluate web sources that are provided by an instructor using the acronym CRAAP (currency, relevance, accuracy, authority, and purpose). Students work together in groups and explore evaluation processes aloud, with guidance from the CRAAP cards and the instructor. This is an adaptation of various evaluating sources activities available in LIS literature and professional resources. This activity is ideally implemented as a kind of collaborative game moderated by the instructor. It is highly adaptable.Students are grouped into 5 groups - one for each criterion of CRAAP. Each group will receive a CRAAP card or 3x5 index card/ handout/ other with evaluation questions pertaining to Currency, Relevance, Accuracy, Authority, and Purpose – different for each table. These are the "designated skeptics" of their criterion. They set out as skeptics and they are explicitly challenged to be challenging, and the rest of the class is directed to challenge them as well with probing open-ended questions. A source will be shared with the class on the projector. These sources will include scholarly articles, websites (blogs and orgs), and reference entries. It is essential that the instructor select sources that are relevant to their students (either by course, subject, or level) and that would be likely results on a student Internet search for a research topic/ question.Each group will evaluate the source aloud on the single criterion they’ve been assigned. If it “passes,” then the source gets asked the next question. If it “fails,” the source is dismissed. The criterion can be called out in order - that is, according to CRAAP - but they can also be called out randomly to be evaluated. This activity can be repeated with various websites or web sources.
Contributor: Cristy Moran
Resource Type(s): Activity
Discipline(s): Not Discipline Specific
License Assigned: CC Attribution License CC-BY
Following a face-to-face library instruction session, students are assigned a short paper in which they select two [web] sources from a list and evaluate them using specific criteria (i.e. currency, relevance, authority, accuracy, and purpose). A real-life scenario is presented and real sources are provided from the first pages of Google search results. Learning OutcomesStudents will construct various search phrases for use in online search toolsStudents will use certain evaluation criteria (e.g. CRAAP) to assess the credibility of online sourcesStudents will examine sources for relevance to their research question and search need (specifically, to determine credibility of claims)Materials include: Full lesson - description, sequenced instruction (i.e. outline), and performance taskAssignment Assignment with suggested answer keyRubric CRAAP handout 
Contributor: Cristy Moran
Resource Type(s): ActivityRubric
Discipline(s): Not Discipline Specific
License Assigned: CC Attribution License CC-BY
The Inform Your Thinking video series introduces students to the frames of the ACRL Framework in an easy-to-understand manner by using conversational tone, approachable peer hosts, relatable comparisons, and eye-catching graphics. This video introduces students to the Searching as Strategic Exploration frame by pushing students to think about their information need and the scope of their search. Students will examine parameters for when and where to perform searches, as well as how they should formulate and refine their search terms.
Contributor: Cristina Colquhoun
Information Literacy Frame(s) Addressed: Searching as Strategic Exploration
Discipline(s): Multidisciplinary
License Assigned: CC Attribution-NonCommercial License CC-BY-NC
This lesson plan from Teaching Information Literacy Threshold Concepts, edited by Patricia Bravender, Hazel McClure, and Gayle Schaub and contributed by Ika Datig, addresses the search strategies and discovery tools students need to employ to recognize the possible reasons for setbacks and continue their research.
Resource Type(s): Lesson PlanPublication
Information Literacy Frame(s) Addressed: Searching as Strategic Exploration
Discipline(s): Not Discipline Specific
License Assigned: All Rights Reserved
This recipe from The First-Year Experience Cookbook, edited by Raymond Pun and Meggan Houlihan and written by Amanda Foster, details a class that asks students to explore the advanced search capabilities of Google and introduces them to free online research tools used by successful researchers..
Resource Type(s): ActivityPublication
Information Literacy Frame(s) Addressed: Searching as Strategic Exploration
Discipline(s): Not Discipline Specific
License Assigned: CC Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License CC-BY-NC-SA
This recipe from The First-Year Experience Cookbook, edited by Raymond Pun and Meggan Houlihan and written by Nick Ferreira and Mackenzie Salisbury, is an exercise for students who understand the basic concepts of research in a college library, but need a quick refresher on college-level research and practical knowledge of their new library’s logistics.
Resource Type(s): ActivityPublication
Discipline(s): Not Discipline Specific
License Assigned: CC Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License CC-BY-NC-SA
This recipe from The First-Year Experience Cookbook, edited by Raymond Pun and Meggan Houlihan and written by Joy Oehlers, demonstrates a fun group activity that uses a familiar tool for ESOL students to make sense of their library collections and basic services.
Resource Type(s): ActivityPublication
Discipline(s): Not Discipline Specific
License Assigned: CC Attribution License CC-BY
This one-shot lesson plan was designed for first-year community college students in a First Year Experience (FYE) course at Lone Star College-CyFair Library, a joint use academic and public library branch of the Harris County Public Library. The lesson plan introduces students to information resources available in print and online in an 80-minute tour and classroom session. Librarians also collaborated with FYE instructors to align the lesson plan’s activities with course outcomes and financial literacy topics covered on the FYE syllabus around the time the one-shots are scheduled. Students work in groups, complete a worksheet, present their work as a group, and reflect in a minute paper at the end of the session. 
Contributor: Jane Stimpson
Resource Type(s): ActivityLesson PlanWorksheet
Information Literacy Frame(s) Addressed: Information Has ValueSearching as Strategic Exploration
Discipline(s): Not Discipline Specific
Type of Institution: Community or Junior College
License Assigned: CC Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License CC-BY-NC-SA
Short Tutorial: An interactive map detailing the common structure of a scholarly article 
Contributor: Jesse Lopez
Resource Type(s): Learning Object
Discipline(s): Not Discipline Specific
Type of Institution: University
License Assigned: CC Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License CC-BY-NC-SA

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