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Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education

Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education

Information literacy is a set of abilities requiring individuals to "recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and use effectively the needed information." Courses structured in such a way create student-centered learning environments where inquiry is the norm, problem solving becomes the focus, and thinking critically is part of the process. Such learning environments require information literacy competencies. The competencies presented here outline the process by which faculty, librarians and others pinpoint specific indicators that identify a student as information literate. Students also will find the competencies useful, because they provide students with a framework for gaining control over how they interact with information in their environment. It will help to sensitize them to the need to develop a metacognitive approach to learning, making them conscious of the explicit actions required for gathering, analyzing, and using information. Faculty can implement some of these standards when designing research activities, problem solving activities, and so forth.

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