Infographic: The Flipped Classroom

Not such a novel idea anymore, the idea of the “flipped” classroom,  where instruction is delivered online, and assignments, activites, and other “homework” are moved into the classroom. Some librarians have tried this, delivering short videos online, and making classroom time more active.

"flipped" classroom infographic



Getting Started with Learning Outcomes Assessment: Purposes, Practical Options, and Impact

Getting Started with Learning Outcomes Assessment: Purposes, Practical Options, and Impact

Slides from Megan Oakleaf’s workshop at the 2010 Library Assessment Conference

Leader: Megan Oakleaf (iSchool, Syracuse University)

Tasked with assessing information literacy on your campus? Confused about your options? Dissatisfied with assessments you’ve already attempted? Intended for librarians considering, commencing, or retooling a plan for assessing student learning outcomes, this full-day workshop will include mini-lectures, discussion, and hands-on, scenario-based activities to engage participants in answering three questions:

  1. What is the purpose of learning outcomes assessment in my library?
  2. What assessment tools can I use? What are the strengths and limitations of each? How do I choose the right one for my campus?
  3. How will my choices impact teaching and learning? How will I “close the loop”?
  4. How might I use learning outcomes assessment to highlight the value of my library to my overarching institution?



Does library instruction increase retention from first to second year?

Kirk, R., Vance, J. and Gardner, J. (2010). The impact of library instruction on freshman performance & retention. Proceedings from Library Assessment Conference 2010: Building Effective, Sustainable, Practical Assessment. Baltimore, MD: Association of Research Libraries.

The powerpoint slides of this presentation concluded that receipt of library instruction made no difference in the freshman-to-sophmore retention rates.  Conclusion: advancing GPA had the greatest impact on retention.


Convenience and its Discontents: Teaching Web-Scale Discovery in the Context of Google

A thoughtful article by Pete Coco, Humanities Liaison at Wheaton College, about the limitations of web-scale discovery systems (like Summon) along with challenges and opportunities for instruction librarians


An assessment story

In order to shave some time off our plagiarism/citation seminar this week, writing instructor Andrea Williams and I decided to send a quick email to all the participants (instructors) a few days before the class,  asking them for 3 reasons why it’s important for students to cite sources.  We would compile the results into a slide and kick off the class with that information, saving about 10 minutes of discussion that we needed for other tasks.

Almost everyone responded to our email, and we received a surprisingly rich range of reasons.   After the session, someone suggested that we post the ideas from the slide in the newly created Citation and Plagiarism libguide that was created for the workshop.

What a great idea: reuse group feedback to make the point about the importance of citations, using the words of instructors as evidence.  We simply added the phrase “We asked 20 U of T instructors and administrators why it’s important for students to understand how to cite sources.  This is what they told us.” We took a screenshot, loaded it into the Libguide, and in 5 minutes added persuasive evidence on the value of good citations. How easy was that?


How to Improve Your Library Instruction: Assessment in Five Minutes

If you missed Sarah Steiner’s excellent webinar, How to Improve Your Library Instruction: Assessment in Five Minutes, you may wish to look at her slides and suggested resources on the ALA website:

You can view the webinar archive at


Partnering for Academic Student Success (PASS) Final report released!

Partnering for Academic Student Success (PASS)

During 2010-2011, Sheril Hook (UTM), Sarah Fedko (UTSC), and Patricia Bellamy (St George) were seconded to the Centre for Teaching Support and Innovation (CTSI) for two days a week as the first participants in the new CTSI and U of T Libraries partnership.  Attached is their final report outlining their progress on the five goals of the partnership:

  1. Build a strong partnership between the two institutions.
  2. Integrate information literacy into CTSI workshops and communications.
  3. Develop best practices for sustainable and scalable instructor-librarian collaboration.
  4. Converse with faculty on integrating information literacy at the course, program, and departmental levels.
  5. Develop instructional excellence amongst teaching librarians.

You will find their final report and many additional documents they created during their secondment in the LibGuide:  Partnership between CTSI and Instruction Librarians.

This website houses documents created by librarians during secondments and is meant to facilitate sharing amongst librarians and CTSI staff. They welcome your feedback here on the blog or the LibGuide.   Alternatively, you may wish to email them:

      Sheril Hook
Sara Fedko

      Patricia Bellamy

Current members of this year’s secondees to CTSI are Joanna Szurmak, Whitney Kemble, Rita Vine, and Patricia Bellamy.