Information literacy refers to an individual’s ability to recognize an information need, to seek out that information, to evaluate the information, and to use that information both legally and ethically to fulfill the original information need.
Information literacy is important for both academic and professional success. At Indiana Tech, we have divided information literacy in to three categories: First-Year (Basic) Information Literacy, Undergraduate Mastery (Intermediate) Information Literacy, and Graduate Mastery (Expert) Information Literacy.
A First-Year (basic) information literate individual has a basic ability to use the library and its resources to seek information. This individual knows how to use print and electronic reference resources, can conduct basic searches using various academic databases and can locate materials in the library. These are the skills you need to find information in your everyday life, whether online or in a library.
An Undergraduate Mastery (Intermediate) Information Literate individual has developed the skill set required to use subject terms and subject-specific tools for individual academic areas and to recognize/identify types of works by citation. This level includes knowing how to find the resources you will need to be successful academically.
Graduate Mastery Information Literacy
A Graduate mastery (expert) information literate individual can easily identify important scholars and seminal works in the field, as well as professional and scholarly associations and journals. This individual is comfortable with resources outside of the university (archives, government agancies, etc.). An individual who reaches this level is an expert on finding information both within and outside their field.
McMillen Library has made the following resources available to students to assist them with their information literacy development:
- Indiana Tech Matrix of Information Skills and Abilities
- First Year Information Literacy Checklist
- Undergraduate Mastery Information Literacy Checklist
- Graduate Mastery Information Literacy Checklist
- Ask a Librarian
- Research Guides
In addition to the resources noted above, faculty may request a class visit to assist in information literacy development of their students.