Information Literacy is the broad ability to understand where information comes from, how to find it, what value different information resources may have respectively, and how to use information to produce new ideas. Being information literate means being able to:
Additionally, your attitude is also as much part of Information Literacy as your skills are. Hard work, persistence, creativity are key to the research process, and being able to recognize your limitations and ask for help is an asset, not a shortcoming. To learn more about Information Literacy, see the Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education from The Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL).
Many students today don’t need to spend a lot of time learning how to find information. Many of you are online everyday finding and gathering information: reconnecting with people, registering for open classes, buying books and other merchandise, downloading driving directions, weather forecasts, song lyrics, recipes, and celebrity gossip.
But gathering information is not research!
Research requires that you find information, of course, but it also demands that you explore ideas, try to solve problems, and make
arguments. Information is important to do these things, but you need time to read the information you find, reflect on it, analyze it, and to write several drafts of papers or projects so that you can present your research in a clear and logical way.
This guide will help you go beyong merely gathering information and into real academic research. Check out the tabs at the top of this page for more information on: