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eBrarian 101 - Twin Cities Library, Saint Mary's University of Minnesota

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eBrarian 101

In 2011, information literacy—the ability to locate, evaluate, and use information effectively—became a core outcome for all Saint Mary's programs. To support the information literacy initiative, Twin Cities Librarians developed eBrarian, which is described below.

What is eBrarian?

eBrarian is Twin Cities Library's instructional program that teaches students how to find and evaluate information. Students learn from interactive learning modules, discussion board reflections, and peer feedback. eBrarians monitor discussion boards and provide assistance for questions that were not addressed in the learning modules. At the end of the course, eBrarians notify faculty which students posted to the discussion boards, and course credit is awarded.

What's in it for me?

The goal of eBrarian is to provide responsive, relevant, and sustainable instruction that does not take away from class time or add to faculty workloads. With eBrarian, students benefit from prompt answers, improved research skills, and critical reflection while faculty have more time to teach course content.

What do I have to do?

Simply embed the eBrarian statement (see below) and discussion board due dates in the syllabus, and eBrarians manage everything else—creating, monitoring, and posting to discussion boards, and recording and notifying faculty of completed discussion board posts.

eBrarian syllabus statement

As part of this course, students are expected to view research tutorials and respond to discussion board questions. eBrarians facilitate discussion board learning and answer questions not addressed in the research tutorials. eBrarians notify faculty when students have successfully completed the discussion board responses. Tutorials and discussion boards can be accessed in (this portion changes based on the LMS employed in your program and the faculty member’s method of course organization).

What do the learning modules cover?

The eBrarians developed several learning modules. The learning modules are highly interactive, self-paced, and self-assessed and cover the following concepts:

  • Information literacy and the research process
  • Developing research topics and questions
  • The process of peer review
  • Primary and secondary sources
  • Evaluating information for academic research
  • Searching using SuperSearch
  • Searching strategies

All learning modules are available in Flash and iPad-friendly formats.