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Information Literacy Guide for Faculty: Information Literacy at Susquehanna

Susquehanna University Strategic Plan

Priority: Deepen Intellectual Engagement
Intellectual engagement lies at the heart of the liberal arts experience. This is not a “new” priority — in fact, it is a recurrent theme from past strategic plans. And yet, we must continue to renew and enrich our efforts in the changing context of a “diverse, dynamic, and interdependent world.” These efforts must be comprehensive, taking place inside and outside the classroom, on campus and throughout the world as faculty, staff, and students challenge themselves and each other to appreciate, analyze, and address the beauty and fragility of our world and our place in it.
Initiative 4: Craft increasingly flexible and dynamic learning environments

• Daily schedules and the annual calendar are arranged in ways that allow:
o significant pedagogical experimentation with time,
o greater opportunities for campus wide gatherings and interaction,
o curricular and co-curricular integration, and
o increased choice in GO Short options.
• Faculty have developed a range of pedagogical tools, including those enhanced by technology, that increase student access and learning outcomes.
Students possess stronger information literacy abilities as a result of intentional and regularized collaboration between library staff and faculty.
• A robust infrastructure is in place to train and support faculty in the acquisition and implementation of new pedagogical techniques.
• The provost works with an ad hoc committee of faculty and staff to review schedule and calendar alternatives. The committee will recommend appropriate changes to the faculty and administration by fall 2015.
• The director of the center for teaching and learning (CTL) and the Committee on Teaching and Learning collaborate with the provost, deans, instructional technologist, and academic department heads to identify opportunities for training and experimentation in pedagogy. The director and the provost will continue to organize and fund on- and off-campus workshops, lunch-n-learns, teaching circles, and other opportunities for discussions of pedagogy.
• The director of the CTL and the provost will identify opportunities for collaboration with other institutions in the area of online and technology-enhanced pedagogy. This includes continued participation in the Teagle Foundation-funded planning grant for the New York-Pennsylvania Consortium for Advancing Faculty Excellence (NY-PA CAFE) and the Council of Independent Colleges Consortium for Online Humanities Instruction.
The director of the Blough-Weis Library and the librarians will work with faculty to construct and execute a plan for information literacy instruction for first through fourth year students.

Mission Statement

The mission of the library is to provide resources and services to stimulate intellectual curiosity, and to facilitate learning and research within the academic community. To this end, the library supports activities which are integral to the university's academic programs. These include:

  • Materials acquisition and preservation
  • Reference, research and user instruction
  • Information retrieval, analysis and evaluation
  • Online access to resources and library catalogs world-wide
  • Collaboration with faculty in developing programs and collections

Information Literacy Mission Statement

“Librarians and faculty share responsibility to educate students to recognize when information is needed; to locate and evaluate information; and to use information ethically and reflectively to create knowledge in communities of learning in their academic careers and throughout their lives.”

Information Literacy Rubric
















Student evaluates sources based on timeliness, reliability, accuracy and authority.   

Sources selected are reliable and timely, produced by an authoritative source and appropriate to the assignment.

Sources reflect an awareness   of the body of material in subject area.

Sources are broadly relevant to the assignment in terms of reliability, timeliness, and/or authority of creator.


Source reliability is questionable.


Sources are irrelevant or only marginally related to the  thesis/hypothesis/argument.



Student selects appropriate documentation style and uses correct mechanics consistently.

Attributions are clear.

Citations correct, complete, consistent

Citation style evident

Citation style is appropriate to the discipline/assignment.

Quotes, paraphrases, charts, diagrams, etc. are cited but attribution may be unclear.


Minor mistakes or inconsistency in citing style.


May cite common knowledge

Quotes, paraphrases, charts, diagrams, etc. are not cited.


Citation style is incorrect, incomplete, or inconsistent.


Inappropriate citation style for discipline/assignment.


Cites common knowledge


Student defines and articulate need for information.

Stated at outset.

Defines key concepts.

Thesis/purpose/hypothesis/argument easily identifiable and clearly stated.

Relevant to assignment/course, etc.

Thesis/purpose/hypothesis/argument is present but does not clearly state the need for investigation; or is not easily identified.  May be too broad or too narrow for the assignment.

A thesis/purpose/hypothesis/ argument is absent or so poorly articulated such that the direction is not evident.


Student incorporates selected information into the project.

Selected sources match the purpose of the work and support or further a coherent argument.


Synthesizes main ideas to construct new concepts.


Sources used are true to the original context.

Sources are used to summarize concepts but do not advance an argument. Sources are

awkwardly inserted into the body of the work. 


Misunderstands sources.


Evidence used fails to support argument.


Student recognizes interrelationships among concepts and compares and synthesizes information from various sources. 

Addresses all possible/alternative theories/counter-arguments.



Sources conversant with one another.



Differing points of view may be presented but are inappropriately weighted.


An attempt is made to put sources in conversation with one another but either ignores some or misunderstands the arguments or tries to force a conversation when there isn’t one.


Alternative theories and counter-arguments are absent.



Sources are not put in conversation with one another. 

Student uses an appropriate variety of types of sources.

Uses variety and number of sources appropriate to the discipline/assignment.


Uses sources appropriate for the breadth and depth of the  project.


Appropriately selects different types of sources,  e.g. scholarly v. popular, primary v. secondary, etc.

Limited variety of sources in terms of format, number, or type.


Sources do not satisfactorily address the breadth or depth of the assignment.

Relies heavily on too few types/number of sources, or uses inappropriate source types.


Sources lack breadth or depth.

Ethical Use of Information

Student uses information ethically and legally.

No evidence of plagiarism. 



All sources are acknowledged consistently and completely.

Student acknowledges sources inconsistently or incompletely.


Some sources are unattributed or only partially attributed.

Evidence of blatant plagiarism exists.



Source information is difficult to identify or absent.




Library Liaisons



Library Liaisons

at Susquehanna University


A library liaison is a faculty member’s first point of contact in the library.  Library liaisons develop close partnerships with faculty members and serve as advocates for the needs of students and faculty in assigned departments.  In cooperation with faculty, the liaison builds a robust collection of research material that supports the university’s curriculum, fosters appropriate information literacy habits among students according to learning level and academic discipline, and evaluates products and services.  The library liaison provides proactive, consistent, and visible service in three main areas: communication, collection development, and teaching.



·         Learns the curriculum of assigned departments

·         Stays informed of each academic department’s disciplinary standards

·         Shares information about the department and faculty with other liaisons

·         Provides news and information about the Blough-Weis Library to faculty, including new acquisitions and changes in service

·         Informs the faculty about trends in academic libraries and professional standards for university librarians

·         Regularly meets with faculty, either by department or individually

·         Provides data necessary to support the department’s initiatives, external reviews, hiring, etc.

·         Makes new faculty aware of library services

·         Solicits feedback about library products and services

·         Periodically attends open lectures, thesis presentations, colloquia, and other departmental events

·         Encourages faculty and students in assigned departments to attend and participate in library-sponsored events



·         Maintains a balanced collection by identifying resources that meet the research needs of the department’s curriculum and studying the collection to fill gaps or remove unnecessary material

·         Facilitates the collection development process for the department by training faculty on collection development procedures and making supplementary purchasing recommendations

·         Ensures that purchasing decisions meet the needs and interests of each department

·         Markets new resources and offers training as necessary

·         Assesses the effectiveness of sources acquired for specific departments



·         Trains faculty, students, and staff on research practice and technology

·         Teaches discipline-specific information literacy sessions

·         Participates in the first-year information literacy program

·         Actively solicits classes in assigned departments

·         Develops proposals for consistent and comprehensive information literacy strategies

·         Creates effective lessons inclusive of active learning and learning assessment

·         Offers one-on-one consultations with students involved in high-level research projects


List of Blough-Weis Library Liaisons