Friday, February 8, 2013

Online Journal Club: 13th February! #ILread

Scroll down to see, and join in, the blog-post discussion of today's article!
The next blog-post discussion for our online Journal Club will be on this open-access article:
McKinney, P., and Sen, B. (2012). Reflection for learning: understanding the value of reflective writing for information literacy development. Journal of Information Literacy, 6(2), http://ojs.lboro.ac.uk/ojs/index.php/JIL/article/view/LLC-V6-I2-2012-5

The date and time will be Wednesday 13th February 8pm-9pm UK time (see http://tinyurl.com/byg2dze for times elsewhere) . The live discussion will take place by posting blog comments on this blog. You can see what happened at the last discussion, here: http://infolitjournalclub.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/first-journal-club-discussion-thurs.html. People are obviously welcome to post comments before and after the "live" session.

Our February article reports on the use of a reflective information literacy report as part of the assessment for a business intelligence module, where the main piece of coursework was a business report (for a real local company). Hopefully you will have time to read the whole article, but I have also put up a few powerpoint slides to summarise the main points (see below) The article is by two of my colleagues here at the Information School (and I taught this module in the past).
I've set up some questions below, but people can jump into the discussion with their own questions and comments:

Questions for discussion could include:
- What did you think of the "Sea Change" model of reflection? (it is explained in more detail, with a clearer diagram here: http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/polopoly_fs/1.232881!/file/Modes_of_Learning_Reflective_Learning_Sen.pdf )
- The students were told to use the SCONUL 7 Pillars as a framework for reflection, and the authors mapped the students' reflections against the Pillars and elements in them. Students reflected more deeply on some pillars than others e.g. for "Evaluate" there were quite a lot of reflective statements, but they were not at a particularly deep level, whilst the reflections on "Identify" were deeper. Deeper reflection is taken as an indicator of deeper learning with "critical self-questioning, and ability to see others point of view". Question: Have you noticed any differences in the depth of students' reflection from one Pillar to another?

- Do you think the student quotations might be helpful when working with other students?

(and more broadly)
- If you have input into modules (e.g. in a Business School) which entail producing a company report or market analysis, what kind of assessment is used, and are you involved?
Have you used reflective reports for learning and assessment of IL (in any subject)?
(Photo by me, boat reflected in Torshavn harbour)

Here are a few slides in which I have identified what I think are some key points in the article:

36 comments:

  1. Looking forward to this evening's discussion! Please say hello as you arrive and we'll get the conversation going in just over an hour.

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  2. Hi, I'm looking forward to the discussion! Some hints for discussion are:
    - Refresh the page often, to see the latest conversations
    - Please use "reply" to a comment if you are commenting on the same topic as the blog comment. Otherwise post a new comment (and if you aren't sure - just do what you feel like ;-)
    - I have highlighted some key points from the article in a short Powerpoint, which you can page through above
    - The article we are discussing is at http://ojs.lboro.ac.uk/ojs/index.php/JIL/article/view/LLC-V6-I2-2012-5

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  3. Our article this month reports on the use of a reflective information literacy report. It is part of the assessment for a business intelligence module, where the main piece of coursework is a business report (for a real local company). The article is by two of my colleagues here at the Information School at Sheffield University (and I taught this module in the past). I suggested some questions above, but do pitch in with other questions or comments, or critique of the article.

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    1. Let's start with the SEA change model, any thoughts?

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    2. It's the first time I've seen it. I think there are easier ways to explain how to reflect (e.g. What? So what? What next?) but I like this because it also addresses why reflection is good and what effect it has. Reflecting on reflection, in fact!

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    3. Yes, and I realised after I had put together the summary Powerpoint (above) that I hadn't really emphasised enough the theme of the *reflective educator*, it is also a model the educator can apply to him/herself

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    4. When I did my PGCert we spent a lot of time reflecting on our teaching - I found it really helpful. I got into the habit of writing a little piece for myself on what went well, what didn't, what to do for next time. It's hard to do it all the time, but really important and part of the reason I write a blog too!

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    5. Hi Jane,

      I agree! Blogging can take more time than I've got, but for Chartership I'm following Jo Alcock's advice by using a really simple Google form for quick reflection on things. This means I'll have a spreadsheet to look back through and reflect on properly when I have the time!

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    6. Hey that's a great idea! I really like that. Simple, but effective. I think it could work as a way of collecting feedback from everyone who teaches on an IL programme. Hmmmm now you are giving me ideas.

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    7. And, noticing the part about reflecting whilst doing, and reflecting afterwards - I think I more or less always do reflection whilst I'm doing (teaching), but I'm not so good at noting that down and reflecting further afterwards. It is where team-teaching is valuable, if you have enough trust in the team to chew things over after a teaching session and compare notes at least orally.

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    8. Jo blogged about her method here if anyone's interested: http://www.joeyanne.co.uk/2012/03/14/collecting-chartership-evidence-using-a-google-form/

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    9. Hi Sheila, good point - one of the reasons I prefer co- teaching to solo sessions is that chance to reflect during the session. I find I also have more opportunity to observe student responses and can therefore adapt better to the needs of a particular group.

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    10. Yes Niamh I also prefer co-teaching for that reason. And there is a chance to debrief after the session on what worked. Going back to Barbara's SEA change model, I think it looks really helpful. I mark an assignment where students have to reflect on the process of building a website. I thought it was quite straightforward to do, but I realise when marking that some of them really struggle with understanding what that means.

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  4. We have reflective information literacy reports for some other modules - I coordinated a module (70 students) last semester where they have to write a similar report. I was thinking that getting the students to write a short reflective piece about a recent information search/incident and then getting them to swap with a peer would be a good idea. The fellow student could be asked to see whether he/she could identify which aspects of which pillars were being discussed (so marking up the 7 Pillars like in the article's Table 1). The objective would not be so much to get the pillar "right" but more about getting the students to think what they were doing, and how it fitted into the search process. They could also ask each other the "so what" and "what next" questions.

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  5. Hello - sorry for joining you late. I'm so pleased you are discussing this article from the Journal of Information Literacy. It was based on a paper at LILAC last year, but really is a great paper on the value of reflection.

    Jane

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    1. Not at all, thanks for joining us! I'm hoping any lurkers will speak up too :)

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  6. I liked the really simple mapping process, which makes it easy to see at a glance which sections are demonstrated in the reflective writing. Thought it was good to point out that ability is not reliant on understanding, that students may be doing things correctly without knowing - or at least demonstrating knowledge of - the context.

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    1. Yes that was an interesting point. When I'm marking this kind of assignment, I do look for internal evidence for what the students say in their reflective reports (e.g. if they say that they were excellent at citing, and they have actually made a huge number of mistakes) and comment on this, but I don't know that I always pick out what they HAVE done well, but they HAVEN'T reflected on. It could mean they are unconsciously fluent, but it could also be an area where they could slide into incompetence because they are assuming they are going along ok.

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    2. I've heard that un/conscious in/competence model before and thought it extremely useful but can't remember the source!

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    3. lol it was me, I mentioned it in my CPD23 post

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    4. Aha! So you did! I need to improve my memory when it comes to sources of information.

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    5. I think there are probably a lot of aspects to information literacy that we could do with teachers (and learners!) being more explicit about.

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  7. Hello, Moira from Newcastle here.
    I'd like to ask a different question. One of the conclusions of the article is that the 7 pillars model doesn't encapsulate the idea that IL needs change over time. I'd like to know if other people agree. In the introduction to the model we indicate that IL attributes of an individual can vary over time and that therefore people may never achieve the top of every pillar. We also refer to the individuals IL landscape. However, the model is focused on attitudes and capabilities rather than IL needs. It's meant to be flexible and organic, so should it be adapted to include IL needs? How different is the suggestion that IL needs should be part of the model? If so how might that best be achieved?

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    1. I haven't read through the 7 Pillars carefully enough, but .... I THINK it doesn't explicitly include the ability to spot that the information need may change and develop over time - the alertness to respond to the information found and needs of the client, so you don't rigidly keep to the original need.

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    2. Thinking back to when I was teaching this Business Intelligence module myself, and even FURTHER back to when I was heading the business information service at the BL - sometimes a businessperson started with a specific need - what he/she THOUGHT he/she needed, but as information started to emerge (or provided impossible to find, because there simply wasn't existing market research or whatever) then the business information specialist had to be able to renegotiate the need with the client, hopefully ending up with something that better matching the real underlying need (or which was a pragmatic compromise, given the client's budget)

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    3. I think IL needs are situational. As such, I'm not sure that they should be part of the model, or that they are even modelable. (I like making up words like that)

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    4. Hi Moira - I think you raise a really difficult concept for any model to encapsulate. I guess we tried to do this in the ANCIL model by putting the learner in the centre to reflect their needs which of course differ over time and depending on the specific circumstance. I know your circular model of the 7 pillars is trying to illustrate it is less linear, but I wonder if it's because they are called pillars?

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    5. Yes, I think that I agree that the needs themselves (so to speak) shouldn't go in. I was thinking that the ability to be alert to, and to respond to, changes to the original information need, could go in more explicitly.

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  8. I think 7 pillars is very clear that information levels can change, but not so much that the research question might itself need to be amended in light of research. Maybe this could fit under Evaluate?

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    1. Hmm, yes, you need to have the skill confidence to decide that what you have done so far is appropriate to the topic you started out with, but that there is an issue with the need itself or how you formulated it, so having to loop back to "Identify/scope". It is particularly important once you come to inquiry based or even problem based learning (and also to situations outside formal learning)

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    2. Interesting - just thinking about this again and doesn't talk of looping imply that we're still thinking of 7 Pillars as a linear (but iterative) model?

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  9. Interesting discussion - thanks folks, I have to dash now, but useful to reflect on reflection!

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    1. Thanks for participating! I think the hour is up now, anyway

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  10. The live chat is over, thanks to participants! Do add comments if you want. We will be switching moderation of comments back on (otherwise we get spammed) so your comment may not appear at once (but we do check frequently for new comments).

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    1. Yes, thank you to everyone who participated. Our next discussion will be on A New Curriculum for Information Literacy on Wednesday 13th March, 8pm GMT, so watch out for that!

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  11. That's been a very helpful discussion, thanks. It's helped clarify things for me a little. For me, the model is about individuals and the attributes they are developing, so in that context, specific needs don't fit. However, I can see it would be possible to shift the focus, as Jane says, so that for a specific research need you could situate the learner at the centre and apply aspects of the model. Also Sheila, yes, the need to be alert to changes in the need could be made more explicit too, that makes a lot of sense to me.

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