Visualizations, whether figures, graphs, or charts, can convey meaning and explore connections in a vivid manner, A recent book edited by Jannette L. Finch, Envisioning the Framework: A Graphic Guide to Information Literacy (ACRL, 2021) contains chapters that provide a variety of visualizations of the ACRL Frameworik for Information Literacy for Higher Education (ACRL 2105) One of the chapters, Visualizing the Convergence of Metaliteracy and the Information Literacy Framework is written by Trudi Jacobson, Tom Mackey, and Kelsey O’Brien. The chapter delves into specifics that help to show how metaliteracy influenced the Framework. It includes this visualization that allows readers to see at a glance where metaliteracy’s characteristics and the Framework’s dispositions align.
Trudi and Jackson Grey, a student in her fall 2021 Information Literacy in the Humanities and Fine Arts course, presented at the virtual 2021 WikiConference North America in October. This course uses a combination of the Wiki Education program, metaliteracy, and frames from the ACRL Information Literacy Framework for Higher Education to encourage students to see themselves as ethical and responsible information producers.
The Wiki Education program provides excellent training for novice Wikipedia editors, but a conceptual understanding of the value of information, as well as scaffolding to recognize themselves as information producers, can provide a rich underpinning for this new set of skills, a background that will help them to see the value of their contributions, and encourage them to continue as metaliterate Wikipedia editors.
Jackson, a senior at the University at Albany majoring in philosophy, provided a student’s viewpoint in such a learning situation where It is possible to share growing knowledge in a field of study. He also explored the differing values of information, inherent vs. as a means to an end, and the disconnect between the availability of information and its importance.
The presentation is available on YouTube as part of a day of programs. It starts at 6:05, and this link is set to start at that point.
As part of this year’s ECIL Online, Trudi Jacobson and Tom Mackey present an interactive workshop entitled “Teaching with Metaliteracy: Developing Informed, Reflective, and Participatory Citizens.” This session applies the core components of the metaliteracy model and feature surveys and padlets to engage the audience. According to the description:
In this interactive workshop, participants will explore metaliteracy, including the metaliterate learner model and characteristics, review the goals and learning objectives and their value, touch upon differences between metaliteracy and the ACRL (2015) and CILIP (2018) conceptions of information literacy, and consider both open metaliteracy resources and sample open educational practice models that they support. Participants will explore options that will meet the needs of their students, and start a plan for incorporating metaliteracy in their formal or informal teaching. They will be able to learn from one another and share ideas on an online, open platform for continuing consultation, reporting of results, and idea-sharing.(Jacobson & Mackey, 2021)
The ideas and techniques applied in this workshop are flexible and transferrable to different pedagogical settings and situations. If you would like to talk with us about ways to adapt this workshop to your setting, feel free to contact us.
Trudi and Tom
“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
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.
The latest issue of Communications in Information Literacy (CIL) features two new articles that focus on metaliteracy.
In the Perspectives section, Trudi E. Jacobson contributes her essay entitled Analyzing Information Sources Through the Lens of the ACRL Framework: A Case Study of Wikipedia. Trudi’s article starts a conversation about the six frames of the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education as explored in relation to Wikipedia and through the lens of metaliteracy. As Jacobson (2020) argues:
There are a number of components in Wikipedia that align with the Framework, suggesting that an analysis of Wikipedia might serve as a contained but rich case study of how the Framework can serve as a construct whose utility extends beyond individuals’ information literacy understanding and progress. Individual frames shed light on this resource, and metaliteracy, which influenced the Framework, highlights additional elements of Wikipedia, particularly as an immersive teaching tool.(Jacobson, p. 374).
The Innovative Practices section of CIL features a new article by Tom Mackey entitled Embedding Metaliteracy in the Design of a Post-Truth MOOC: Building Communities of Trust. Tom’s contribution provides a descriptive analysis of the grant-funded Coursera MOOC Empowering Yourself in a Post-Truth World based on the metaliteracy framework and one of the key themes to emerge from the project related to building communities of trust. As Mackey (2020) argues:
This descriptive analysis of the Empowering Yourself in a Post-Truth World MOOC shows how metaliteracy is embedded in the course to prepare learners as informed consumers and ethical producers of information. Participants gain insights about their affective responses to information by reflecting on their preconceptions and conducting research to create a digital artifact. The course-specific learning outcomes in each module are based on the metaliteracy goals and learning objectives and associated components such as the learner roles, learning domains, and characteristics.(Mackey, p. 357)
We welcome your feedback about these new metaliteracy articles and look forward to being in dialogue with you in 2021!
Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!
Tom and Trudi
We are delighted to share this guest post by Sarah Nagle, Creation and Innovation Services Librarian at Miami University, Oxford Ohio. Sarah explores the maker movement, its tenuous fit with the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy, and what she defines as a strong alignment with metaliteracy.
Metaliteracy as a Bridge Between Maker Literacy and the ACRL Framework
Sarah Nagle, Creation and Innovation Services Librarian
The popularity of makerspaces has soared across the world since the onset of the Maker Movement in the mid-2000s. Makerspaces are collaborative working and learning spaces that often include technology such as 3D printers, sewing machines, laser cutters, and other equipment. While community and public library makerspaces led the charge in the early years of the maker movement, maker-centered learning has blossomed in the realm of education, becoming a popular learning tool in K-12 schools, and more recently in higher education. Often, university makerspaces live in the campus library. University libraries can provide broad access to communal, collaborative spaces for the campus community, making them an ideal location for makerspaces. Maker-centered learning has a strong multidisciplinary, collaborative aspect, and makerspaces traditionally put value on the open sharing of things and ideas, something that is deeply embedded in the spirit of libraries.
As makerspaces have grown in popularity in education, some important projects have arisen to study the benefits and outcomes of maker-centered learning. Agency by Design (AbD) (Clapp et al., 2017) is a multi-year research project that has studied maker-centered learning. Although the project focused mainly on K-12 education, many of the findings can apply to maker-centered learning for any age level. AbD developed a Framework for Maker-Centered Learning, which focuses on maker empowerment and design sensitivity. A prominent framework for maker-centered learning in higher education is the Maker Literacies Project (Wallace, et al., 2018), an IMLS-funded initiative started at the University of Texas Arlington, has developed a list of maker competencies for higher education, in addition to providing a wide range of examples of makerspace course integrations. A common thread for maker-centered learning frameworks is the development of a maker mindset, which places emphasis on empowerment, failure positivity, and critical thinking. Often absent from maker-centered learning frameworks is a strong emphasis on the acquisition of specific skills. In other words, even though students are learning specific tools, technologies, and software, the enduring value that they receive from maker-centered learning experiences is primarily related to mindset development.
The question of how maker-centered learning connects to information literacy instruction remains largely unanswered. Since moving from public to academic library makerspaces in 2018, I have grappled with how to bridge maker-centered learning with my library’s information literacy instructional mission, which focuses heavily on the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy. Attempting to map maker literacies to the ACRL Framework can be a difficult task; there are many similarities, but there are also many outcomes of maker-centered learning that don’t fit perfectly within the six frames. Then I began reading about metaliteracy and discovered that the concept provides an excellent overarching model for connecting experiential learning competencies like maker literacy to the ACRL Framework.
Metaliteracy places emphasis on learners as active, collaborative, and introspective creators. This perspective on information literacy broadens the scope of library instruction and makes room for new and innovative literacies, such as maker literacy. Below are some of the important ways that metaliteracy encompasses the outcomes of maker-centered learning.
- Shift from consumer to creator – Goal 3 of the 2018 Metaliteracy Goals and Learning Objectives includes students’ ability to view themselves as producers of information. An important outcome of maker-centered learning focuses on this shift as well. Rooted in the ideals of the maker movement, the shift from consumer to creator fundamentally changes students’ outlook and connects closely with the theme of empowerment. Students are no longer blindly consuming information and things, but rather looking critically at all aspects of the designed world around them, with a confidence in their ability to analyze, tinker with, and design new objects.
- Empowerment – Learner empowerment is mentioned in the metaliteracy documentation as an outcome of metacognition and metaliterate learning. Empowerment is also a key component of maker-centered learning frameworks. The ultimate outcome of the AbD Framework for Maker-Centered Learning is Maker Empowerment. This is defined as “A sensitivity to the designed dimension of objects and systems, along with the inclination and capacity to shape one’s world through building, tinkering, re/designing, or hacking” (Agency by Design, n.d.). In other words, maker-centered learning helps students critically evaluate the world around them, understand how things work, and gain confidence in their own ability to fix, improve upon, and create things.
- Civic mindedness – One characteristic of metaliterate learners is their tendency to be civic minded. Civic mindedness is also a byproduct of maker-centered learning. When students experience empowerment through maker-centered learning, this empowerment begins to extend beyond themselves, often resulting in students’ commitment to use their newfound agency to make a difference in the world at large. A hallmark of the maker movement is the propensity of makers to use their skills to give back to their communities. A recent example is the maker community’s response to shortages of PPE and medical devices during the COVID-19 pandemic. When stories began circulating of PPE shortages, makers worldwide immediately stepped up in huge ways to design, develop, and manufacture face masks, shields, and even parts for medical devices such as ventilators. AbD identifies “Community Making” as one of the primary benefits of maker-centered learning, defining it as, “Finding opportunities to make things that are meaningful to one’s community and taking ownership of that process of making, either independently or with others” (Clapp et al., 2017, p. 41).
- Metacognition – Metacognition is an integral component of metaliteracy, as one of the four domains of metaliterate learning. Although the current literature and frameworks on maker literacy do not explicitly address metacognition in maker-centered learning, the concept is certainly interconnected with the maker learning process. The maker mindset involves critical evaluation of one’s own beliefs and outlooks. In all of my makerspace instruction sessions, I start by introducing students to the maker mindset, which gives students the opportunity to understand and evaluate their own shift in thinking as they develop themselves as makers. Additionally, Wallace et al. (2018) discuss how maker learning activities were more effective when faculty members included self-reflection in the assignment. They describe how the addition of journaling or other self-reflective components to maker assignments increased student growth. This metacognitive step also contributes to maker empowerment, because when students understand the elements of mindset development, they have the ability to control their own learning.
As more academic libraries implement makerspaces, academic library maker educators may face pressure to demonstrate how maker literacy fits with the ACRL Framework. Metaliteracy not only expands students’ expertise of information literacy to include rapidly changing digital environments, it also has the potential to be the bridge that connects newly forming innovative literacies, including maker literacy, to the ACRL Framework. By embracing mindset development rather than skill acquisition, information literacy instruction has the potential to help students develop lifelong practices and viewpoints that will continue to serve them long after they graduate.
Agency by Design. (n.d.). The Framework for Maker-Centered Learning. http://www.agencybydesign.org/explore-the-framework
Clapp, E. P., Ross, J., Ryan, J. O., & Tishman, S. (2017). Maker-centered learning: empowering young people to shape their worlds. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
Wallace, M., Trkay, G., Peery, K., Chivers, M, Radniecki, T. (2018, August 3-5). Maker Competencies and the Undergraduate Curriculum. Paper presented at the 2018 International Symposium on Academic Makerspaces, Stanford, CA. Retrieved from https://rc.library.uta.edu/uta-ir/handle/10106/27518
Sarah Nagle is Creation and Innovation Services Librarian at Miami University in Ohio, where she supports transdisciplinary projects and course integrations relating to a variety of maker and innovation topics. Sarah’s scholarly interests include inclusivity in the maker movement and how maker-centered learning can enhance learning both in informal environments and higher education.
The new book edited by Heidi Julien, Melissa Gross, and Don Latham The Information Literacy Framework: Case Studies of Successful Implementation, features a Foreword written by Trudi E. Jacobson and a metaliteracy chapter authored by Tom Mackey. Trudi’s perspective as co-chair of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) task force that developed the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education, informed her Foreword for the book. Trudi noted that: “The chapter authors and editors of this volume have done a great service for librarians and other educators who wold like to expand their understanding of the potential impact and use of the Framework and add to their repertoire of ways for integrating it into their work” (p. xi).
The ACRL Framework was influenced by aspects of metaliteracy and in his chapter entitled “Exploring Metaliterate Learning through the Frames of Information Literacy,” Tom Mackey investigates both models as complementary. In particular, he examines the final project assignment in the metaliteracy MOOC Empowering Yourself in a Post-Truth World as an example of metaliterate learning from the perspective of the six frames of the ACRL Framework. He also argues that “The metacognitive aspect of metaliteracy has been a driver for these projects and suggests the need for further development of this approach in information literacy as well” (p. 217).
This new book, published by Rowman & Littlefield, includes 18 different case studies from librarians and faculty members who have experience applying the ACRL Framework in practice. Take a look at the range of the chapters–you are certain to find some pertinent to your interests!
Trudi Jacobson and Tom Mackey presented a second workshop (see October 3 post for details about and slides for the first, on metaliteracy and open educational practices). This workshop entitled Integrating Metaliteracy and Information Literacy into Teaching and Learning, also held at the Potchefstroom campus of North-West University (NWU), South Africa, occurred on Friday, September 20. Trudi and Tom conducted the workshop at the invitation of Dr. Jako Olivier, UNESCO Chair on Multimodal Learning and OER and Professor in Multimodal Learning at NWU.
The workshop, Integrating Metaliteracy and Information Literacy into Teaching and Learning, was designed to introduce metaliteracy and the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education to participants. Of particular note was the unveiling of a new comparison of the metaliteracy learner characteristics and aligning dispositions from the ACRL Framework (slide 22). This figure and the accompanying investigation is the focus of a chapter by Trudi Jacobson, Tom Mackey, and Kelsey O’Brien, “Visualizing the Convergence of Metaliteracy and the Information Literacy Framework,” which will be included in a forthcoming book edited by Jannette Finch, Envisioning the Framework.
After a brief overview of the two frameworks, it was time for the participants to start applying concepts and ideas to their own teaching. Working in small groups, attendees identified an information literacy goal they have for their students, and determined how metaliteracy and existing metaliteracy OER might help to achieve this goal.
Tom Mackey and Trudi Jacobson have been invited to South Africa as keynote speakers at the International Conference on Information Literacy (ICIL), being held this year at North-West University in Vanderbijlpark. The conference theme is Information Literacy in All Spheres of Life, and will take place September 23-26.
Tom’s keynote, to take place on September 24, is titled Building Communities of Trust: Metaliterate Learning for a Post-Truth Society. Trudi is presenting on September 26 on Creating Shareable Knowledge: Exploring the Synergy between Metaliteracy and Open Pedagogy. The other international and national keynote speakers at the conference include Serap Kurbanoglu of the Department of Information Management at Hacettepe University in Ankara, Turkey, Irina Zhilavskaya, Chair of Media Education, Moscow Pedagogical State University, Bosire Onyancha of the Department of Information Science at the University of South Africa, Karin de Jager, University of Cape Town, Ina Fourie, Department of Information Science at the University of Pretoria, and Jako Olivier, professor of Multimodal Learning in the School of Professional Studies in Education at North-West University.
Trudi and Tom have also been invited by Dr. Olivier to give a prestige lecture and two workshops at the Potchefstroom campus of North-West University the week prior to the conference. The collaborative lecture is Exploring the Foundation of Metaliteracy in Theory and Practice, and the workshops are Applying Open Educational Practices to Develop Active Metaliterate Learners and Integrating Metaliteracy and Information Literacy into Teaching and Learning.
Look to Metaliteracy.org for future posts that feature slides from both keynotes, the collaborative prestige lecture, and the shared workshops.