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Information Literacy Benchmarks

Information literacy goals and benchmarks for Muskingum students by year.

What is Information Literacy?

Information Literacy is the library term for the set of skills needed to find, retrieve, analyze, and use information.

 An information literate individual is able to:

  • Determine the extent of information needed
  • Access the needed information effectively and efficiently
  • Evaluate information and its sources critically
  • Incorporate selected information into one’s knowledge base
  • Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose
  • Understand the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information, and access and use information ethically and legally(source)

Information Literacy standards are set by the Association of College and Research Libraries and help librarians be sure we are preparing our students for success in the 21st century world. 

You can read more about Information Literacy at the ACRL's page for Information Literacy Resources

What are Benchmarks?

Benchmarks are meant to reflect both our goals and the reality of what we see from students at Muskingum, both in the in-classroom instruction we do and in the work we do with researchers at the reference desk. 

A benchmark in a certain year means that most students seem to have a solid grasp on that skill by the end of the year in question. Library instruction for courses typicaly taken in a certain year is often geared to help students meet these benchmarks. 

Not every student will leave Muskingum with all benchmarks met. Their information literacy instruction depends greatly on the classes they take, their interaction with librarians, and their own dedication to learning these skills. It is our hope that through partnership between faculty and librarians, we can give the majority of Muskingum students a solid foundation in information skills before graduation.