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Stony Brook University

Information Literacy

Resources for Assignment and Activity Ideas

These resources support the teaching of information literacy. They will also help support those courses using the ESI (Evaluate and Synthesize Information) and CER (Critical and Ethical Reasoning) learning objectives of the Stony Brook Curriculum. Librarians are happy to collaborate with faculty to design activities and assignments tailored to specific courses, learning objectives, and research assignments, as well as teach library instruction sessions or workshops. For more information on collaborating with a librarian or requesting a library instruction session, please visit our library instruction webpage.

Resources to find Information Literacy Assignment or Activity Ideas:

  • ACRL Framework for Information Literacy Sandbox
    • A place to discover ways to use ACRL's information literacy framework in instructional settings.
  • ACRL's Information Literacy in the Disciplines Guide
    • This site contains links and citations to information literacy standards and curricula developed by accrediting agencies, professional associations, and institutions of higher education.
  • CORA: Community of Online Research Assignments
    • CORA is a collection of open educational resources (OER) for librarians, faculty, and other educators. It is intended to be a collaborative space for adapting and experimenting with research assignments and sharing the success or lessons learned so that others may benefit. 
  • Ideas for library-related assignments, from the University of Puget Sound
    • A list of assignment ideas to teach various research and critical thinking skills.
  • PRIMO (Peer Reviewed Instructional Materials Online) Database
    • PRIMO is a means to promote and share peer-reviewed instructional materials created by librarians to teach people about discovering, accessing, ethically using and evaluating information in networked environments. The ACRL Instruction Committee hopes that publicizing selective, high quality resources will help librarians to respond to the educational challenges posed by still emerging digital technologies.
  • Term Paper Alternatives: Ideas for Information-based Assignments
    • Adapted from materials developed by the University of Newfoundland, University of Michigan, University of Puget Sound, Gustavus Adolphus College, and the Univeresity of California at Berkeley.
  • Short Readings or Videos to Provoke Discussion
    • A list of readings or videos that is updated regularly. The readings are short, but thought-provoking, and chosen for their potential to challenge students' understandings of their daily interactions with information. Use them for in-class reading, discussions, or take-home assignments.
  • Visual Literacy: A Guide
    • An introduction and guide to visual literacy for undergraduate students, developed by University of North Carolina at Greensboro librarians.

Individual Assignments or Activities:

  • Comparing Information Formats
    • In this activity, students analyze information created by the same author, but in different formats, and then ask themselves, "How does the information's format change how you interact with, understand, or value the information?"
  • Dissecting Peer Reviewed Journal Articles
    • Peer-reviewed articles vary in organization, content, use of vocabulary, and style depending on the academic discipline. In this activity, students gain a more thorough understanding of how experts communicate within different disciplines by analyzing the structure of articles from different subject areas and in different academic journals.
  • Exploring the "webbiness" of the web
    • An activity designed to encourage students to follow their own interests, develop motivation to engage in research, and feel proud of what they find.
  • Using Primary Sources in Research: A Tutorial at Stony Brook University
    • This tutorial, designed by SBU Director of Special Collections Kristen Nyitray, consists of seven lessons designed to help students understand, find, analyze, and use primary sources in their research.