Call for Proposals: Information Literacy through the Streets of Hollywood

We are soliciting short lesson plans or supporting activities for a book we are writing for Library Instruction Publications. In this publication we plan to highlight activities that foster and encourage critical thinking as it relates to information literacy, film, and other video media.  These activities will focus on teaching conceptual and transferable information literacy competencies.  As teachers we appreciate and eagerly embrace instructional techniques and devices that engage students in the learning process. From our experience, we have observed that students are very receptive to the use of film and other visual media in instructional sessions. Since we teach information literacy courses, we know that many films contain excellent examples relating to essential components of the information literacy curriculum. In many of our classes, we utilize this medium to teach students the fundamental aspects of information literacy.  Each lesson plan or learning activity will follow the format previously used in the Active Learning Series. Authors will organize their lesson plans with sections titled Circumstances of the Instruction, Objectives of the Instruction, and Components of the Instruction. Supplementary materials such as handouts and worksheets will accompany the text. The book will include a Table of Contents as well as an index listing each type of activity for easy access.

List of possible topics and activities incorporating lesson plans include
but are not limited to:

  1. Film & determining the extent of information needed. Students determine the extent of information they need.  They do this by defining and articulating the need for information; identifying different types and formats of possible information sources; consider the cost and benefits of acquiring this information; and reevaluate the nature and extend of the information needed.
  2. Film & accessing the needed information effectively and efficiently. Students learn to access effectively and efficiently their informational needs. They do this by selecting appropriate investigative methods or retrieval systems for accessing information; constructing and implementing effective search strategies; retrieving information either online or in person, as appropriate; refining search strategies if necessary; and extracting, recording and managing the information and its sources.
  3. Film & evaluating information and its sources critically. Students learn to critically evaluate information needed.  They do this by summarizing the central idea to be extracted from gathered information; articulates and applies initial criteria for evaluating the information and its sources; synthesizes main idea to construct new concepts; compares new knowledge with prior knowledge unique characteristics of information; determines whether the new knowledge impacts the individual’s value system and reconciles differences; and validates understanding and interpretation of information through discourse with others.
  4. Film & using information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose. Students learn to use information effectively for a specific purpose. They do this by applying new and prior information to the planning and creation of a particular product; revising the development process for the product; and effectively communicate the product to others.
  5. Film & understanding the economic and legal issues surrounding the use of information. Students learn about the economic and legal issues surrounding the use of information. They do this by understanding and following the laws, regulations, institutional policies, and etiquette related to the use of information.
  6. Film & understanding the ethical and social issues surrounding the use of information. Students learn about the ethical and social issues surrounding the use of information.  They do this by understanding and following the laws, regulations, and institutional policies related to privacy, censorship, and copyright with regards to information.
  7. Making your own videos to support film &Information Literacy. By creating films, students become more fluent with the technical and organizational aspects of film/web technology. In addition, by developing information literacy-based content through media, they will have a better understanding of the topic.
  8. Incorporating Outtakes: By using film bloopers or outtakes (errors made when actors are filming), fact inaccuracies, and editing mistakes, students will learn to actively think critically about the medium and the way in which information is presented.
  9. Incorporating the use of film &Information Literacy in discipline-related instruction: By using films in discipline-based Information Literacy, students will learn about subject content complemented by Information Literacy skills. They will learn how to access as well as analytically assess and evaluate this medium in the context of the discipline.
  10. Incorporating film festivals (local, national or international): By using film festivals in instruction, students learn about film initiatives at a broader level.  They will get a better understanding of topical and/or genre details.

Each lesson plan should be about two or three pages explaining the purpose of the activity, how it is implemented in the class or in an online environment, and how it is assessed.  The lesson plan might be enhanced with hand-outs, charts, or illustrations.  Longer lesson plans are acceptable, if necessary.

In addition to lesson plans, other topics of interest may be explored regarding supporting activities for the use of film and media and information literacy; some possible topics are:

  1. Using your library to support film & Information Literacy: Instructors learn how to take advantage of the various mechanisms that their library can use to support the teaching of Information Literacy through the use of film. This can range from simply borrowing from the library’s video collection to using high-end audio-video editing software and digital camcorders for recording and editing films.
  2. Using film clips: Instructors learn how to edit and manipulate small segments of either existing films or home-made film to teach principles of Information Literacy.
  3. Incorporating Internet short films & videos: Instructors learn how to incorporate Internet shorts into teaching Information Literacy by using resources such as the Moving Image Archive or CineMedia. They will also learn techniques for search the Internet to find quality video and avoiding worthless or questionable material.
  4. Using documentaries: Instructors learn how to use documentaries in teaching Information Literacy. Documentaries come from an array of sources: independents, professions, government, home-made, etc. They will learn where to find and how to properly edit and manipulate the film and video.
  5. Other topics you might think would be of interest!


March 12, 2010-Deadline for proposals
April 9, 2010-Final notification of proposal acceptance
May 21, 2010-Deadline for chapters

Please contact either of us with questions or suggestions for lesson plans or supporting activities. If you have more than one learning activity that fits the criteria, you may submit each idea as a separate lesson plan or supporting activity.

Carol Anne Germain
Networked Resources Education Librarian
University at Albany, State University of New York University Libraries
1400 Washington Avenue
Albany, New York 12222
Voice: 518.442.3590

Gerald T. Burke
Bibliographer of Humanities
University at Albany, State University of New York University Libraries
1400 Washington Avenue
Albany, New York 12222
Voice: 518.442.3592