“The information literate student validates understanding and interpretation of the information through discourse with other individuals, subject-area experts, and/or practitioners.”
I’ve been working through some ideas for a piece about Weblogs and wikis and all these new tools and their impact on “literacy.” In a nutshell, the Internet has changed the requirements of what it means to be literate. While just about everything we used to teach with was a finished, edited text, the Web now provides us with a gazillion unedited texts, which means it’s no longer enough just to be able to read; we have to read critically. And now that the Internet is a read AND write technology, part of our literacy has to include skills to communicate and collaborate with a much larger, less contrived audience. Finally, since there will no doubt be an ever-growing body of information out there to deal with, we need to be literate in managing information what we find relevant and meaningful.
In my travels this morning, I landed on the Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education put up by the American Library Association. It gives some pretty in depth definitions of information literacy, and lists 23 performance indicators for information literate students. What struck me is how many of them can be addressed by blogging:
Weblogs are such a great tool for doing much of this, and they offer a transparent, organized way for teachers and students to measure these proficiencies and others.