On Thursday, June 22, Mary Jane and I gave a brief presentation about workplace information literacy at an all-Library Services staff meeting. We discussed how our training is well suited to helping our students develop 21st century skills and essential workplace skills. Here’s our presentation:
Workplace information literacy
Over the next couple of weeks, we plan to send a survey out to the staff to ask about specific work they are doing to support essential workplace skills.
On May 24, I went to visit the Canada Business Network office in Halifax and learned about the services for entrepreneurs and small businesses which they offer which include:
- Help navigating federal, provincial and other funding
- Secondary market research, such as demographics, using databases they license (Paul will send me a list of these), which include Ibisworld, Gale products, Salegenic, Statistica, Conference Board of Canada and PCensus.
- This office has a toll free phone number and email, or clients may contact Paul Gerin (Business Development Officer) or Cindy Allen (Communications Officer) directly to help with tier 2 research beyond what the call center can provide.
- Some other sources noted were:
- NSBI Market Research
- Connections (guide for immigrants who are starting businesses)
- Halifax Central Library entrepreneurship presentations and one-to-one consulting on the resources they have available to help entrepreneurs and small businesses startups, refers clients to the Business Center for more specific information
- CBDC (which has an Atlantic association)
- Springboard Atlantic
- NRC Concierge Service – identifies funding and research
- Centre for Women in Business – holds an event at which all service providers are welcome
- CEED.CA workshops and training (Bayer’s Road)
- Some possibilities we discussed:
- NSCC Library Services could be added to canadabusiness.ca, identifying our e-resources which can be used on-site at NSCC libraries.
- Information about Canada Business Network and other related institutions could be added to NSCC’s Library Liaison program
- Canada Business Network could help with the following:
- If instructors gave them a heads-up on market research students would need for a course, they could have it pre-assembled and could give to students who contact them.
- New grads who are looking at entrepreneurial opportunities can contact the call center to get help with market research (although local requests get sent to Paul or Cindy).
- They could deliver a presentation to Library Services staff.
- They are going to send out brochures that I will distribute to Library Services.
I did it. I completed my first American Sign Language course. This may have been one of the biggest and most enjoyable challenges of my life. The class was mixed in ages, and my brain definitely did not work as well as those of the younger students in the class, so I had to work harder. That was a new experience for me. I’m used to being one of the first in the class to “get it” and this was humbling.
It was fascinating to be in a class with a deaf instructor. In order to communicate with her, I had no choice but to learn the language; it wasn’t like my French class where I could ask the instructor things in English if I didn’t have the French words. I appreciated the peace in the classroom (no one talked aloud) and I now think that all students should learn some basic sign language in elementary school. Otherwise, for those whose only language is ASL, the world is very closed, and for the rest of us we miss the opportunity to communicate with these people.
Of all the diversity training I’ve taken over the years, I think this course demonstrated to me best of all why our world is a better place when we have diverse workplaces, when many voices are able to be represented in our social structures.
And I got a pretty good grade:
Today I presented my mid-way report to the LCP panel, and this was an excellent opportunity to reflect back upon all the learning I have accomplished since then. I started thinking about submitting an LCP about two years ago, and it was rewarding– and motivational– to hear from the panel that they saw the value in my learning.
Here is the written report I submitted:
Denise Parrott, LCP Midpoint Reflection
Here is my powerpoint presentation:
And now on to the next pieces of this project!
Yesterday, I met with my mentor, Mary Jane, and we discussed the next steps in our LCP work. We discussed some of the career-related training she has taken in her new term role as a learning strategist and how it fits well with our LCP goals, and we are looking at the possibility of tying this into how we’d like to share some of our learning. Here are the presentation opportunities we’d like to explore:
My creativity mentor, Kathleen, sent me some information about a 40-day writing program, https://www.reneehartleib.ca/40-day-writing-project
I’ve been following James Clear, who was also recommended to me by Kathleen, and a recent email I received discusses continuous improvement. In this post, Clear says:
“If you get one percent better each day for one year, you’ll end up thirty-seven times better by the time you’re done.”
Small steps. I just convinced myself to sign up for the 40 day writing project, starting in June!
Jacobson, T. E., & Mackey, T. P. (2016). Metaliteracy in practice. London: Facet Publishing.
- Examines issues relevant to the new ACRL Framework in relation to metalitaracy.
PIL (Project Information Literacy) conducted a two-year study of recent US college and university grads. Their findings “underscore a gap between the critical thinking and information literacy competencies colleges may be teaching and the work skills they may need” (p. xi).
The Metaliteracy Learning Collaborative has produced several useful pieces of work (including this book) which I have been following:
The authors discuss how to incorporate metaliteracy learning objectives into coursework. They point out that metacognition is a “learned practice” and that students are likely, even with prompts, to describe their actions instead of reflecting to articulate on their learning (p. 56). Some excellent coursework components from a nursing course are given in Chapter 3, “Metaliteracy Learning of RN and BSN Students” (pp. 57-58):
- Hallmarks of Professionalism email assignment, which immediately asks students to reflect on their attitudes, behaviour and knowledge about writing within their profession.
- Brainstorming to select a specific topic and scope.
- Research log to identify search strategies and sources.
- Annotated bibliography to summarize, evaluate and reflect upon their sources.
- Proposal to a supervisor for topic approval, first working individually and then in groups to refine it.
- Presentation of evidence by adapting and remixing it for patient education scenarios.
- Final reflection in which students summarize and describe their learning, and how it will be applicable in the future.
Where Collections and Metaliteracy Meet (Chapter 4)
The author (Amanda Scull) notes that in her institution (Mason Library at Keene State College), most library instruction focuses on large databases, but she advocates for moving away from this to developing and promoting institutional repositories and research guides.