Metaliteracy Featured at Transnational Online Course on Intercultural Perspectives on Information Literacy

Metaliteracy was explored as part of a one-week international online course about Intercultural Perspectives on Information Literacy. The project team for this initiative is led by Prof. Dr. Joachim Griesbaum and Theresia Woltermann from the Department for Information Science and Natural Language Processing at Hildesheim University, Germany. This year’s summer workshop also included educators and students from Symbiosis College of Arts and Commerce Pune, India, University of Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and University of Graz, Austria.

Tom Mackey, Professor of Arts and Media at SUNY Empire State College and Trudi Jacobson, Distinguished Librarian at The University at Albany were invited to represent “Team USA” from the State University of New York (SUNY). Trudi and Tom presented a Team USA Workshop that explored their contributions to the project from a metaliteracy perspective, including related open educational resources (OER) developed as part of their work with the Metaliteracy Learning Collaborative.

As part of this week-long transnational online course, students collaborated on final projects that they presented to all participants on the last day of class. Each of the student projects provided a detailed analysis of an information literacy or metaliteracy online resource. The students conducted research and closely examined each platform based on content analysis, usability, and accessibility. Two of the teams analyzed specific metaliteracy OER including the open content associated with the Metaliteracy Digital Badging system and the Coursera MOOC Metaliteracy: Empowering Yourself in a Connected World. Both presentations are exceptional and will inform the further development of each metaliteracy resource. The slides from each student group are shared with their permission:

“The Metaliteracy Badges” by Group 4: Ismail Börü, M E Jacob, Swara Bhatt,
Meghana Manoj Warrier and Denise Schatte

“Metaliteracy: Empowering Yourself in a Connected World” by Group 5: Nakia El-Sayed Alina John Shuchi Shekdar Namik Jamakosmanović.

Tom and Trudi were inspired by this exciting international online course and will continue their participation by developing related online courses as part of the next session in fall 2021.

If you have any questions or comments or would like to contribute your own feedback to these metaliteracy resources, feel free to reach out.

-Tom and Trudi

Videos of Metaliteracy Talks at SUNY CIT 2021 Now Available

SUNY’s Virtual Conference on Instruction & Technology (CIT) 2021 featured presentations related to metaliteracy by Prof. Trudi Jacobson and Drs. Sheila Aird and Tom Mackey. Both talks are now available via the CIT YouTube channel along with all of the other video recordings from the conference. Sheila and Tom spoke about their international collaboration to teach Digital Storytelling online while embedding the metaliteracy framework throughout the course. Their joint presentation entitled Collaborating to Teach Global Digital Storytelling Online is available via their Global Digital Stories blog. Trudi’s presentation, Scaffolding Student Learning The Role of Metaliteracy in Open Pedagogy, explores the connection between metaliteracy and open pedagogy in teaching and learning and is embedded as part of this posting.

Scaffolding Student Learning The Role of Metaliteracy in Open Pedagogy

The slideshows for each presentation are available via a previous blog posting entitled Metaliteracy Presentations at SUNY Virtual Conference on Instruction & Technology (CIT). If you have questions about either talk or would like to share your own experience applying these concepts just let us know.

Tom and Trudi

Study Finds Americans Have Trouble Spotting Fake News: A Metaliterate Reaction

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

CNN and other news sources recently reported on a study of over 8000 Americans who were surveyed about their ability to discern fake news via “headlines presented in the format of how news articles would look if they appeared in a Facebook feed. They were also asked to rate their ability to determine whether stories were true.”

Trudi was asked to comment on the article by a member of her University’s Office of Communications and Marketing. That piece was published on June 2 in a shortened form. Here are her original comments with brief CNN quotes setting the stage:

From the CNN article: “In all, these results paint a worrying picture: The individuals who are least equipped to identify false news content are also the least aware of their own limitations and, therefore, more susceptible to believing it and spreading it further…”

Trudi: It can be eye-opening to realize your powers of discernment may not be what you think they are, regardless of your level of education, profession, or political leanings. I recommend that everyone take the Common Misconceptions test offered by the organization Clearer Thinking. While it focuses on common misconceptions rather than headlines, there is enough similarity to assess, as they put it, “How well can you tell reality from B.S.” Not only will you find out if your understanding of the 30 items they ask about is on target, but, more importantly, “this test will analyze your answer patterns and provide a custom report that tells you how often you should trust your gut and when it’s better to be suspicious of your intuitions.” I was speaking from personal experience when I said it was eye-opening!

From the CNN article: “If people incorrectly see themselves as highly skilled at identifying false news, they may unwittingly be more likely to consume, believe and share it, especially if it conforms to their worldview. Recognizing that one’s judgments on the truthfulness of headlines or content aren’t infallible will, hopefully, keep down the negligent sharing of false information.”

Trudi: There are other things that you can do besides take the Common Misconceptions test and triangulating news from sources with different perspectives. I recommend becoming familiar with the Metaliteracy Framework, which emphasizes the importance of becoming a responsible citizen and ethical consumer, sharer, and creator of information, both individually and collaboratively. The Metaliteracy Learning Collaborative has developed a number of free online tools, from short videos on YouTube to fun quests to more extensive Coursera MOOCs (massive open online courses), all of which provide a great introduction to the learning domains, roles, and characteristics of metaliterate learners—people who know to be skeptical about information until it is assessed. This list of resources was originally offered in the form of a blog post, but is now the first item under the Metaliteracy in Practice tab. Kudos to Kelsey O’Brien for the design of the resource list.

A second approach, related to metaliteracy, is to shift one’s thinking away from cognitive biases and towards open inquiry and curiosity. There are a number of new initiatives, such as the Open Mind non-profit which offers tools that “equip people with the mindset and skillset to communicate constructively across differences.” 

You can listen to Trudi’s interview on this and related topics for WAMC, the local National Public Radio station.

Metaliteracy Presentations at SUNY Virtual Conference on Instruction & Technology (CIT)

This year’s SUNY Virtual Conference on Instruction & Technology (CIT) 2021 featured two metaliteracy presentations. Prof. Trudi Jacobson presented Scaffolding Student Learning: The Role of Metaliteracy in Open Pedagogy. Trudi’s presentation examines the relationship between the core concepts of open pedagogy and metaliteracy with a focus on student creations that resulted from this approach.

In a second metaliteracy presentation, Prof. Tom Mackey collaborated with Prof. Sheila Marie Aird on Collaborating to Teach Global Digital Storytelling Online. Tom and Sheila’s presentation explores how they applied metaliteracy to the design of a Digital Storytelling course they co-teach at SUNY Empire State College as a fully online international experience. Their slideshow is available via their Global Digital Stories blog.

The Roles of Metaliteracy and Wikipedia Editing in Overcoming Imposter Syndrome

“Anyone could make edits, and anyone could challenge those edits…This helped me feel less like an outsider trying to fit into a conversation and more like one of a million voices that were working together towards a shared goal of information creation and consumption.”

It is not only illuminating, but also vital to hear from learners about the impact of their encounters with metaliteracy. Asking them to write reflective pieces is one way to find out how components of metaliteracy may have had an effect on their learning. A recent Wiki Edu blog post by Corrin Baker, a graduating senior at The University at Albany, provides such insight. Corrin expanded a wonderfully written course reflection for this post about a course taught by Prof. Trudi Jacobson.

In describing metaliteracy’s producer role, Ms. Baker wrote:

The shared roles of producer and consumer were present in every step of the course. I was fully engaged in locating and evaluating sources, and then finding ways to make that information both understandable and accessible. I felt a great sense of responsibility to the audience and to the authors whose work I was using. I was also far more aware of diversity in a global audience, especially as I found myself struggling to find non-male authors to cite. 

The course, which lasts just seven weeks, is challenging for students, but aims to have a lasting effect on their understanding of information and their roles in producing and sharing it. Corrin’s reflection testifies to the incredible impact that the blend of metaliteracy, information literacy, and the wonderful Wiki Education program can have.

Read the full post here: Overcoming imposter syndrome by editing Wikipedia

Wiki. edu logo by David Peters of EXBROOK for Wiki Education Foundation – Wiki Education Foundation, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=33179189

New Metaliteracy Article Published in C&RL News

Are you embracing and advocating for metaliteracy?

Read the new article by Valerie J. Hill and Thomas P. Mackey published in College & Research Libraries News entitled Embracing Metaliteracy: Metamodern libraries and virtual learning communities to explore the benefits of engaging with metaliteracy in today’s fractured information environment. This essay explores the theory of metamodernism and virtual library communities through the lens of metaliteracy. According to Hill and Mackey:

As educators strive to deal with this information flood in a world of partisan politics and questionable content, critical and reflective thinking are required to better understand this philosophical moment and one’s role in it. Metaliteracy promotes the development of metaliterate digital citizens who are civic-minded and effectively produce content in a participatory networked culture (Hill & Mackey, 2021, p. 220).

As part of this article, the Community Virtual Library (CVL) in Second Life is analyzed through the four primary goals of metaliteracy. Valerie J. Hill is the director of the CVL and provides insights about related programming in this virtual library community such as the annual Dickens Project that features a reading of A Christmas Carol and historical simulations.

Thanks to Trudi E. Jacobson for reading a draft of the article and providing feedback!

Hill, V., & Mackey, T. (2021). Embracing metaliteracy: Metamodern libraries and virtual learning communities. College & Research Libraries News, 82(5), 219.

Metaliteracy: Engaging Students Through Assessment as Learning

Profs. Trudi Jacobson and Tom Mackey delivered the keynote address entitled Metaliteracy: Engaging Students through Assessment as Learning at the Second Virtual Training Session 4th National Meeting of Information Literacy Competencies. This virtual event was hosted by the University of Puerto Rico in February and the presentation is now available as a recording on YouTube.

This presentation explores both the theory and practice of metaliteracy with a particular emphasis on assessment as learning. The following topics are covered:

  • Engaging Students in Learning
    • Developing a Metaliterate Mindset
  • Metaliteracy and Open Learning
  • Metaliteracy and Assessment
  • Integrating Assessment through Metaliteracy in Your Setting

In addition to the recording, feel free to explore the slide deck for ideas about ways to apply metaliteracy to your own teaching strategies.

We welcome any feedback or ideas that you have and when you adapt one of these techniques to your own setting let us know!

Trudi and Tom

Help Needed to Publish a Metaliteracy Article in Wikipedia

"Wikipedia" by giulia.forsythe is marked with CC0 1.0

Will you join in the effort to enhance a Wikipedia article about Metaliteracy?

(“Wikipedia” by giulia.forsytheCC0 1.0)

Wikipedia is used by so many people to learn about topics they are interested in. But if they want to learn more about Metaliteracy, they won’t have much luck. A search on the word “metaliteracy” in Wikipedia yields two results, very brief mentions in the Information Literacy and Transliteracy articles. There have been efforts in the past to get an article included specifically on Metaliteracy. Now, once more, the draft Metaliteracy article that began with these earlier efforts has been restored for editing. This latest draft needs additional content before being considered for permanent status. It would be tremendous if the effort this time were successful.

Are you available to work on a new draft of a Wikipedia article about metaliteracy? An educator in Canada is analyzing how the article might be shaped to address the reasons earlier efforts were unsuccessful. Her analysis can be seen on the Talk page for the draft. She is continuing to work on the page, but is new to metaliteracy and would love to have assistance. Tom, Trudi, and Kelsey are unable to work on it, as per Wikipedia’s policies. While we post all of our open content via Metaliteracy.org, including a concise definition at our About page, our latest Publications, and Metaliteracy in Practice, it would be great to reach an even wider audience through Wikipedia. Types of additions that are particularly needed are information about metaliteracy applications by others, and connections between metaliteracy and other pedagogical frameworks.

If you have already edited Wikipedia, feel free to jump right in and join the conversation on the Talk page. If you’ve never edited Wikipedia, learning to do so is not hard, and it is actually quite fun and satisfying! There are numerous resources available to help you learn how to edit. Here are just a few of them:

The Wikipedia Adventure: Learn to edit Wikipedia in under an hour! Accomplish 7 missions and you are good to go! Unfortunately, the adventure doesn’t work on tablets and other mobile devices.

Student training modules: Trudi’s students learn quite quickly how to edit Wikipedia by working through some of these concise yet extraordinarily helpful modules. Ignore the mention of the student dashboard, and jump right in. If you’ve completed The Wikipedia Adventure and want a refresher on some topics, this would be a great way to access that information.

Contributing to Wikipedia: A one-page guide to get you started.

If you need help once you start editing, the best place to ask questions is the welcoming Teahouse.

We hope you can help us make the Metaliteracy Wikipedia article a reality!

Trudi, Tom, and Kelsey

New Metaliteracy Book to be Published in Summer 2021

The new metaliteracy book written by Tom Mackey and Trudi Jacobson will be published by ALA/Neal Schuman in summer 2021!

The fourth metaliteracy book in a series is entitled Metaliteracy in a Connected World: Developing Learners as Producers and will focus specifically on the metaliterate learner as informed and ethical producer of information in collaborative social settings. The Foreword to this book will be written by Jako Olivier, UNESCO Chair on Multimodal Learning, and OER Professor in Multimodal Learning, North-West University, South Africa.

In this newest book in their series, the authors carefully examine the central role of learners as producers of information, a foundational idea for the metaliteracy framework and one that’s more important than ever in our current media and information environment. They emphasize the active role today’s learners play as individual and collaborative metaliterate producers of information in various forms, including writing, digital stories, digital artifacts, and multimedia productions. The authors explore a range of connected social settings from online courses to social media to open learning environments. 

(https://www.alastore.ala.org/mlitproducers)

We are excited to announce the forthcoming publication of our next book and will provide updates via Metaliteracy.org as we get closer to the publication date so stay tuned!

Best,

Tom and Trudi

Metaliteracy Presentation During SUNY Online’s Open Education Week, March 1-5

SUNY Online has just published their schedule of events for 2021’s Open Education Week.There are a number of presentations from Monday, March 1 to Friday March 5, several of which fit in well with the very metaliterate idea of learner as producer.

On Tuesday, March 2 at 10:00 ET, Trudi will be presenting “Enhancing Student Engagement Through Scaffolded Non-Disposable Assignments,” in which metaliteracy will be playing a starring role! At least one of her current students plans to participate, providing his views as a counterpoint.

Perhaps you will be able to attend one or more of the sessions. The registration link is available on the schedule of events page.