Document Type

Conference Presentation

Publication Date

October 2014


The instruction librarians at a four-year, private university developed a multi-year information literacy instruction program to meet recently implemented information literacy learning outcomes in the university’s new core curriculum. The sequential information literacy instruction program includes two required library interventions in the first year - a tutorial to introduce students to basic information literacy concepts and a face-to-face library instruction session to build on the concepts learned in the tutorial. This structured program has presented many opportunities for the librarians to experiment with and assess creative and innovative approaches to instruction. In this presentation we will discuss one such approach that hybridized the in-person library instruction sessions attended by 1,273 first-year students.During the face-to-face intervention, the instruction librarians were expected to introduce students to advanced search strategies to help them find relevant information for their research topics and to evaluate that information for quality. In order to adequately incorporate both of these learning outcomes into one 50-75 minute session, it was decided that a hybrid approach was necessary. Hybrid, or blended learning is a method of instruction in which students learn through a combination of face-to-face instruction and computer-mediated activities. The hybrid instructional method allows multiple opportunities for student learning, can increase student motivation to learn and respects diverse learning styles.To hybridize this session, we developed a short tutorial that students completed as homework introducing them to six advanced search strategies through videos and guided live searching. Additionally, the paper-based, active learning exercise the students completed in class was “gamified” and transformed into a digital learning object (The RADAR Game to increase student engagement and learning. Gamification is the process of transforming a non-game instructional activity using game design thinking to increase motivation and engagement. We will discuss the game design components used in the redesign of this active learning exercise to meet the goal of increased student engagement. Some of the gamification techniques to be discussed include motivational feedback, collaboration, and competition.The results from two assessment surveys will also be discussed. The first survey was given to a stratified random sample of 300 students to measure their perceived learning and satisfaction with the library instruction session. The second survey was administered to all instruction librarians who taught three or more of these in-person instruction sessions to measure the perceived student engagement. Preliminary results indicate high levels of student engagement and learning. At the conclusion of this presentation, attendees will be able to describe the hybrid teaching method and best practices, be able to apply the hybrid teaching method in their own institutional or local context, and be able identify the best practices for designing and incorporating digital learning objects successfully.