Tuesday, 3 April 2007

BA Information Literacy Concept Plan

Many of you know that I am enrolled in the Grad Cert in Uni Learning & Teaching. I am currently enrolled in ELT503, the second last unit I have to do (yes!!).
For my latest assignment I chose to develop a Concept Plan for info lit in the BA degree.
I would like to use my assignment as the basis of a plan I can present to Arts T&LC.
Note that this is a concept plan that might later be expanded to cover all Arts Faculty degrees.

Could I ask for comments on my plan which can be found at:
N:\PVC-T&L\Library\Functional Documents\Information Services\_Arts\Teaching_learning\BA InfoLit Project\InfoLit for the BA Concept Plan.doc

I apologize for the academic nature of the plan, but it is substantially the same as the assignment I have just submitted for ELT503.
My aim now is to produce, with your help and suggestions, a simpler, actionable plan that can be presented to Faculty T&LC.
As you give me feedback and suggestions I will develop a new document for ATLC. It would be good if I could present something to their 25th May Meeting.


Kate G said...

Initial comments on the concept plan

On first reading, I was impressed with the concept plan. It presented concrete strategies and goals that can be elaborated on to formulate a more formal proposal.

For me, several issues emerged as being key factors that need to be concentrated on in the drafting of the proposal:

1) The importance of beginning the training semester one, year one – introducing and embedding core skills very early on in the piece. However, I think Roger has made it clear that this should not be seen as the “be all and end all” – these generic skills need to be reinforced and built upon throughout the three years. However, “getting in early” is imperative.
2) Identifying significant “champions” of the project early on & keeping them informed of/seeking input in the planning process – promoting a sense of ownership and involvement & using them to further promote and enhance the project.
3) The teaching needs to be contextualised – the skills need to be integrated with the study programme in order for them to be meaningful for both students and staff. Bother students and staff need to clearly see a “reason” for what they are learning. It needs to appear (and be!) relevant to their learning progression in order for them to see the value in absorbing the information.

These observations are only based on first reading and I will endeavour to look more closely at the plan over the Easter break.

Have a great holiday,

Kate G

Paul said...

I have some questions regarding the proposal:

- It would be useful to actually map the 3 levels of IL proficiency against the new BA structure as I am not sure they will align for all courses. The IL skill sets required do not vary much from year 2 and 3 units at the moment (for visual arts) and I would like to see if the new structure does change this. I agree with Kate about getting in early!

- Is it possible to 'map the majors'? I am not entirely sure how the structure works but it appears to me that there are infinite pathways and therefore impossible to map without some duplication in the IL programme.

- If we have an assessable task in 3rd year then we have to ensure no duplication and I am not sure how we can do this?

- Can we use the web based IL tool for assessment in 3rd year? Doesn't it only cover the basic skills sets and not the advanced?

- I particularly like the e-portfolio approach to generic skills. I think this has great potential and the library should have active participation in its development. Do we know at what stage of development this has reached? Should we be concentrating our efforts to fit in with this model?


Roger Carter said...

Rogers reply to Kate-
3) The teaching needs to be contextualised:
Pretty much everything I talk about in this project implies that it is done in a contextualized way. In fact -so we are all up with the jargon - we are aiming as much as possible for full curriculum alignment if possible..i.e. IL content fully integrated into the curriculum, with stated learning outcomes in the unit outline. appropriate teaching strategies and IL content assessed as part of the unit assessment. We are not achieving all these yet but we are in some units. Note that the Arts Faculty hierarchy is fully supportive of efforts we make in this direction (as stated in my paper). Thanks for you comments Kate

Scott said...

Hi All,

I attended the Education T&L Commitee meeting recently. One of the things they are trying to do is share units, ie. identify all the bachelor degrees units where they could combine into one class. Their plan sounds like a way to implement the plan outlined by Roger.

Roger Carter said...

Rogers reply to Paul-
I discussed my concept with several academics, including Mitchell Rolls (Riawunna) who is very experienced with these curriculum issues. Interestingly, he said to me before he even saw my proposal that the only way to get IL comprehensively into the BA would be to do it on the basis of the majors! Obviously there will be challenges and there will be some overlaps, but I think I have covered that in my document.

Even now, there are not infinite pathways in the BA if we think in terms of majors. Every major has one or at most a few "most probable pathways"
First year is easiest and you are correct that the present 200/300 system makes progression across the 3 IL levels difficult. My plan is predicated on the assumption that the new generic structure will happen (and I am assured that its a 'done deal'). I do not think we have to make this plan work fully under the present structure- however even several of my key lecturers are keen to make a start. (e.g Mitchell wants to implement IL in his 3rd year research unit as a trial)I do not think some duplication of assessable task would actually be a problem if it just involved the demonstration of IL level 3 skills in an essay (for example). The challenge would be working with lecturers to develop appropriate assessment for those skills. I am hoping that we can eventually develop a web based tutorial that will allow for this type of higher level IL tutorial. My plan envisages very little face to face contact at level 3, but these details would have to be worked out for each major by course coordinators and LLs.
The eportfolio is under active investigation (Gaon Mitchell in Admin is leading this). So far thet have not progressed very far as they have not decided waht they really want! I do hope they decide to go for it though.

Thanks for your comments Paul.
Please keep the discussion going!

Susan Bell said...

We have all been aware for some time that implementing the IL Framework was going to be tricky in Arts because the multiple pathways through the degree lead to duplication or missing out.

I think Roger's ideas about mapping the majors combined with the e-portfolio are the best attempts at a solution I've heard so far. Let's hope it all goes ahead!