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Creating an Effective Library Research Assignment

Purpose of an effective library assignment
Preparing your students for your library assignment

Characteristics of effective library research assignments


What is the purpose of a library assignment for your course?

The assignment:

How can you prepare your students for your assignment?

What are the characteristics of effective library research assignments?

1. The assignment is clear and students know what you want them to learn and why.

2. Correct and unambiguous terminology is used.
Familiarize your students with terms that you may take for granted. To prevent student frustration:

3. There is a critical thinking component.
Design assignments that require your students to evaluate, analyze and synthesize the information they find. Consult with your librarian about designing an assignment that challenges them yet permits them to acquire basic and more mechanical research skills.

4. Students are given opportunities for learning the knowledge and skills needed.
Provide your students with the instruction they need in your class or schedule an instruction session with your librarian.

5. Learning of knowledge and skills needed for the assignment are assessed.
Besides assessing or grading the final product, consider including these "checkpoints":

6. The assignment can be reasonably done within the time allowed and with available resources.

7. The assignment includes information and instruction on the ethical use of information.

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