Drive, revive, survive...and thrive: going the distance for information literacy

Peacock, Judith A. (2001) Drive, revive, survive...and thrive: going the distance for information literacy. In Revelling in Reference 2001: Reference & Information Services Section Symposium, October 12-14 2001, Melbourne, Victoria.


Along with the increasing emphasis on generic capabilities, information literacy is becoming the catalyst for comprehensive and, at times, radical curriculum reform within the tertiary sector. As libraries move to consolidate a dynamic and authoritative position in this evolving scenario so, too, do academic reference librarians face the challenge of reconstructing their professional roles and responsibilities.

Reference librarians will become key educators in the teaching and learning environments of the future, working in professional partnerships with faculty teaching staff. To do so, they must be equipped with refined skills and the conceptual knowledge which enables them to perform with an educational competence, and professional confidence, equal to that of their academic peers.

However, responsibility also rests with parent organisations to provide adequate, appropriate and timely support for this shift in emphasis. The academic library must reinvent itself as a "learning library" which facilitates effective and sustainable approaches to information literacy education, embraces the pedagogical foundations of teaching and learning, and participates in the creation of dynamic learning environments for students. In turn, tertiary institutions must reduce arbitrary limitations and accept, accommodate and encourage newly-defined teaching and learning roles and partnerships.

In this scenario, the role of the reference librarian changes to one of an educational leader, learning facilitator and information literacy protagonist (Drive). Systemic barriers which currently exist between academics and librarians must be examined, and challenged where necessary; alternative organisational and functional models may serve to bridge the educational divide and foster potent teaching and learning partnerships (Revive). The essential skills and professional development required to facilitate the ‘librarian-teacher-facilitator’ metamorphosis subsequently presents implications for librarians and library managers in terms of evolving roles and responsibilities, changing expectations, staff development and organisational restructuring (Survive). Such approaches will make critical differences to the tertiary learning environments of the future (Thrive).

Where appropriate, examples of current local and global practice will be used to illustrate salient points.

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ID Code: 719
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: teaching librarians, information literacy, HERN, professional development, librarian educators
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > LIBRARY AND INFORMATION STUDIES (080700)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > SPECIALIST STUDIES IN EDUCATION (130300) > Educational Administration Management and Leadership (130304)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Division of Technology, Information and Library Services
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2001 (please consult author)
Deposited On: 01 Feb 2005 00:00
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2015 06:04

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