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Library Home Page Homage to the Letterform

Information Literacy @ ACC Overview

Program Overview

Library Services and the faculty of Austin Community College work together to develop a plan for the integration of information literacy skills across the curriculum. At the request of faculty, reference librarians are available to conduct instruction sessions on locating and accessing information resources related to library assignments located in and beyond the library. Additionally, Library Services has developed web-based tutorials, such as the Info Game, which provides a comprehensive introduction to web-based research and to the library's electronic resources.

Part of the mission of Library Services is to provide "instruction to promote information literacy and life-long learning." We define information literacy as the "set of skills needed to find, retrieve, analyze, and use information." (American Library Association, 1989). Students graduating from Austin Community College should be prepared to apply the information skills they learn as students to all aspects of their lives as citizens, family members, employees, and professionals. Information literate students have transferable skills from their formal education they can use throughout life and as a means toward continued learning.

Library Services is committed to a program of course-integrated library instruction. The ACC Library program introduces students to information resources, strengthens their research skills, and facilitates critical thinking skills. Librarians serving as a Teaching Team lead in the development, maintenance and distribution of college-wide programs, although all reference librarians may be involved in instructional design and teaching. A Teaching Team exists to ensure the success of information literacy efforts college-wide.

Program History

Library Services is committed to a program of course-integrated library instruction. This approach--having library instruction embedded within the curriculum and developed in collaboration with classroom faculty, rather than as a separate library-controlled program--was pioneered by Earlham College. Earlham sponsored national conferences promoting this approach in the 1980s. Five ACC librarians and as many classroom faculty attended one of these workshops. We have never wavered from favoring this approach. The ACC Library program introduces students to information resources, strengthens their research skills, and facilitates critical thinking skills. Course-integrated programs, which introduce basic library skills as part of required coursework, are available in several disciplines.

Library Services and the faculty of Austin Community College work together to develop a plan for the integration of information literacy skills across the curriculum. A college-wide information literacy committee, the Austin Community College Ad Hoc Committee on Information Literacy, was formed to further this cooperation. The committee produced a Final Report in 2001, which described their efforts and the direction of the College in this area.

Library Services assists in the development of information literacy skills

  • By promoting the use of library resources in all formats
  • By collaborating with faculty from all disciplines and workforce areas to integrate information literacy into their academic programs
  • By making information literacy an integral part of a college education rather than a simple one-hour library orientation
  • By using learner-centered teaching methods such as active, collaborative, and inquiry-based or problem-based learning
  • By providing instruction formally, in-person or across distances via technology
  • By evaluating the effectiveness of our approaches and constantly developing our own skills

Teaching Team Charge

  • Plans and implements course-integrated instruction and promotes information literacy objectives college-wide.
  • Designs and distributes LS student-oriented instructional materials such as study guides and library assignments in multiple formats, including print and online.
  • Coordinates with Library Leadership Team to assign instruction-related tasks and projects to individual LS professionals.
  • Works with IRT Faculty Development to improve the information literacy of the faculty and to encourage them to include it in their curriculum.
  • Coordinates librarian participation in the design and distribution of faculty-oriented instructional material, such as web tutorials, training handouts, etc.
  • Identifies relevant IL training and development curriculum and coordinates librarian participation in these opportunities.


page author: B Jorge
last revision: 8/12/10bj