Writing centers and libraries seem to be natural partners. Academic writing requires use of a variety of sources that students are often asked to find through the library. Related, there is much overlap between the work of writing center personnel and librarians in supporting students in learning the conventions of academic writing and information literacy. Unfortunately, this overlap can be invisible or, worse, conflicting and confusing to students.
Most campuses have centers focused college teaching and faculty development. Collaborating with these centers is a good way for librarians to reach faculty and to integrate information literacy into courses and curriculum. Some academic libraries are heavily involved in the work of college pedagogical practice improvement toward better student learning outcomes, such as Purdue University, where librarians are members of the management team for IMPACT (Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation), a program to help Purdue faculty and instructors to improve their teaching for better learning outcomes (McMurtrie, 2018). Since the program began in 2011, the library has been a critical partner; in addition to members on the management team, there are several librarians involved with the program.
We reached out to subscribers and asked them to share stories about how Credo impacted their library instruction efforts. We were impressed by the innovation and creativity these librarians demonstrated in designing FYE programming, workshops, activities, and for-credit courses to help their students build the IL skills that will be essential to their academic and personal success.
In my last post I wrote about teaching from the microcosm, one of my favorite chapters from Parker Palmer’s The Courage to Teach. Now I’d like to delve into another concept I’ve adapted from this classic text to include in my own work: paradoxes in instruction.
I came across the classic book, The Courage to Teach: Exploring the Inner Landscape of a Teacher’s Life by Parker J. Palmer, thanks to its inclusion on the reading list for our campus Teaching Support Program. It is a powerful book and I am immensely grateful to Parker Palmer for writing it—according to the forward, it took 10 years to complete. Despite its age, originally published in 1998 and reissued at the 10th anniversary in 2007, it speaks to today’s teaching landscape well. Of particular interest to my work was Parker’s practical teaching idea: Teaching from the Microcosm (Palmer, 2007, pp. 123 - 135).