This course is designed to build upon a learner's search skills and expertise in the information literacy concepts that underpin scholarship at college or university. This badge incentivizes them to continue improving their information literacy competencies over their academic and workplace career. By participating in this course, one can use these advanced search skills to save time conducting literature reviews, efficiently gather and organize information, ethically use sources, and protect their own intellectual property.
Learners will work independently on a topic of their choosing and receive feedback from their peers throughout the process. The modules build on each other and provide learners with a framework (project outline). The final project is disseminated as a digital object that exemplifies the learner’s status as an emerging scholar or professional.
The modules are self-paced, the estimated completion time for each module is 2 hours. The content within in each module can be paused at any time, with the exception of the quiz at the end of each module.
Understand various forms and expertise of scholarship
This module includes the course welcome. It also covers the concept of formal and informal information sources in an open scholarship environment (ie. alternative publishing platforms, open access, and paid/proprietary subscriptions). Students will understand the economic and political realities of disseminating information at the federal and global levels. They will also evaluate the information sources they consult for currency, relevancy, authority, accuracy, and bias.
Cite scholarship to give proper attribution
Information has value, therefore, it must be properly cited to avoid plagiarism. Students learn how to organize their project’s references, and properly employ citation conventions using citation management tools and style manuals to avoid plagiarizing. Students learn how multimedia is licensed for reuse with varying degrees of restriction using Creative Commons licensing. They learn how to provide attribution to various scholarly multimedia (images, audio records, and videos) they consult, as well as how to license their own work.
Strategically explore the information landscape
This module covers brainstorming your initial project idea to create a compelling and manageable research statement. Students will then learn to identify keywords from the statement for purposes of searching and expand upon those words using synonyms. Advanced Boolean, truncation, wildcard, and phrasal searching will also be covered.
Map the information landscape
In this module you will employ the search strategies you have developed in module three and search relevant information sources (databases, organizational websites, government repositories, and alternative platforms) using advanced database search tools such as controlled vocabulary, cited references, and bibliography mining. You will use the citation management tool of your choice from module two.
This is the culmination where you will work on crafting a research topic/argument and develop three points that support your argument from the research you do using the Internet, Google Scholar, and databases available to you through your local library or public university/college.
Bryan Sajecki, Nicole Thomas, Cynthia A. Tysick and Jocelyn Swick-Jemison