Assessing Undergraduate Information and Technology Skills:
Opportunities, Outcomes & Challenges




Shortcuts: UNI101 Template  ·  Assignments: 1  ·  2  ·  2 Revised  ·  Additional



UNI 101: Template for Class Syllabus

Librarians were given entree into the UNI 101 classes for administration of the assessment and two additional sessions for the purpose of providing actual instruction. In order to provide a common experience for all students several core assignments were developed. The assignments were revised between the first [fall 2001] and second [fall 2002] cohort groups. The librarians still had two library sessions in 2002 but the assessment was completed as part of the passport program students completed on their own prior to the beginning of school.

Each UNI101 instructor used a common templage - UNI 101: University Student Success - for the creation of a course syllabus. The template included the campus-wide Categories of Learning Outcomes which were linked to each UNI101 assignment.


Assignment #1: Exposure to Library Resources and System

The basic set of resources and services to emphasis in this assignment were based upon the Cafe Fletcher Menu. Each librarian had flexibility in how the assignment was organized and delivered, however, there was collaboration and "borrowing" of aspects of the exercise among the group.

Below are several different versions of the assignment designed to expose students to various parts of the library and the basic systems contained therein. Each assignment has a slightly different focus and varied strengths but students in every community was required to complete it for a grade.

Version 1: Experiential Trip by Ed McKennon - created for Ethnic Studies and English 101
This library exposure assignment is designed to encourage discovery of library resources via a guided path that focuses on student personal and/or academic interest. This assignment can be tailored to various curricula, but it is suggested that the focus on student interest remain intact. Alternate Version for Ethnicity, Communication & Community created by Bee Gallegos is available. Other Versions were created in subsequent semesters for Learning Communities.

Version 2: Virtual and Reality Tour by Lisa Kammerlocher - created for Psychology and Criminal Justice
This library exposure assignment focuses on the distinct subject areas found in any the learning community. In the example presented here, topics intersecting crime and psychology are explored by students. Other "Real and Virtual Tours" have been created for the Psychology/Philosophy and American History/English learning communities.

Version 3: UNI 101 Library Assignment by Carolyn Johnson - created for a stand-alone UNI
This is the most general UNI assignment as it can be used in any instructional setting. Uses a student centered teaching technique to expose students to library services by asking students to focus on movies, travel, dreams, and their hope to eradicate one problem facing humanity.

Assignment #2 [Fall 2001]: Plagiarism and Other Topics

Each librarian had a second library instruction session in their community but the information covered and the assignment given varied. Below are listed several tools used by librarians in constructing assignments and lessons related to plagiarism. In many UNI 101s, librarians were asked to conduct the plagiarism session in the context of a larger session about academic integrity.

Plagiarism Exercise by Dennis Isbell
Demonstrates various forms of plagiarism and misuse of information resources. Uses an ALA statement on the "Importance of Information Literacy to Individuals, Business and Citizenship" as a source text to demonstrate plagiarism to the students. Includes a tips sheet on how to avoid plagiarism.

What is Plagiarism at Indiana University? A Short Concept Lesson by Ted Frick
This web-based interactive lesson walks students through the basic concepts of plagiarism and challenges them with varying examples.

STA 104-01: Student Code of Conduct and Student Disciplinary Procedures from Arizona State University.
Includes the official university statements on plagiarism.

Assignment #2 [Fall 2002]: Synthesizing Information

Between the first and second freshman cohorts, the focus of assignments changed. Librarian and faculty collaborators reexamined the first semester experience and its outcomes, and then decided to modify the second library exercise which all freshman in the learning communities would experience.

In the fall of 2002, the "Information Synthesis" exercise became a standard part of each UNI 101. The exercise is a concept mapping strategy for students which helps them to learn to effectively integrate information from multiple sources for the purpose of creating an outline, defining a research focus or identifying further areas for research. Post-it notes or concept mapping software such as Inspiration can be used to manipulate concepts and ideas.

Version 1: Synthesizing Information: A Model That Works for Everyone by Carolyn Johnson - created for a stand-alone UNI
Overview for instructors and learners on the value of using this technique. Includes sample concept maps, instructions for instructors, and step by step instructions for the student.

Version 2: Moving from Information to Presentation by Lisa Kammerlocher - created for Psychology and Criminal Justice Fall 2001
Instructions for students in preparation for a group exercise using the synthesis method.

Additional UNI & Learning Community Assignments

Additional library sessions beyond the two were negotiated individually within the communities. Listed below are various assignments and parts of required assignments used by librarians in support of their learning community curricula. Each assignment addresses some aspect of library research or information literacy. Each assignment is customizable to various curricular needs.

Assignment That Asks Students to Design the UNI Curriculum
This end of semester assignment asks students to design a syllabus and course calendar that reflects their values in combination with a set of learning objectives defined by the instructor. The student assignment template is linked here. No students syllabi are included.

Web Evaluation Form by Bee Gallegos - adapted for Ethnic Studies and Communication
Originally created for upper-division education students, this was revised by the librarian and administered by the learning community faculty to promote web evaluation skills and awareness among students.

APA Citation Style: Exercise Key by Lisa Kammerlocher - created for Psychology and Criminal Justice
This active learning exercise, created by the librarian and administered and graded by the learning community faculty, is designed to help student identify which type of APA citation is appropriate for a given type of publication. Photocopies of essential information from print materials and database records were provided to enable students complete the exercise. Included here is a key that can be adapted to meet various instructional needs.

Identifying and Using Popular and Empirical Articles by Lisa Kammerlocher and Prof. Gaylene Armstrong - created for Psychology and Criminal Justice
AJS 200: Assignment #1 is designed to help students learn to use popular and empirical articles in a summary essay. In preparation for the essay assignment, the Popular and Scholarly Periodical exercise provides individuals and groups practice in reviewing and identifying article types from sample database entries and abstracts. Alternate version created by Bee Gallegos is available.