4 Creating Learning Opportunities in Open Education: An Exploration of the Intersections of Information Literacy and Scholarly Communication

Michelle Reed


In many academic libraries, scholarly communication and information literacy are considered distinct areas of librarianship that are typically managed by separate units within an organization. Those who practice in the realm of scholarly communication tend to emphasize support for faculty and sometimes graduate students, focusing on the topics of copyright, access, visibility, and data management as they relate to research and scholarly publishing. Information literacy librarians, on the other hand, prioritize undergraduate students and focus on information-seeking behavior, information evaluation, and ethical use of information. The practice of information literacy librarians has been deeply impacted by educational theory, instructional design, and the scholarship of teaching and learning, resulting in a growing emphasis on learning outcomes and assessment, while that of scholarly communication librarians shifts in confluence with case law, public policy, and commercial publishing practices.

In 2013, the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL) published Intersections of Scholarly Communication and Information Literacy: Creating Strategic Collaborations for a Changing Academic Environment, a white paper that defined three important connections between these two critical areas of librarianship and proposed a variety of strategic actions that librarians can take to capitalize on the potential of the Intersections. Recommendations included developing integrated educational programs for librarians, redesigning information literacy curricula for all audiences to include topics of scholarly communication, discussing organizational models that break down silos, and advocating for the value of libraries in disseminating scholarship and contributing to student learning.

Since then, a number of books, articles, and presentations have been published on topics central to the Intersections. A bibliography of relevant readings is available on ACRL’s website (ACRL, n.d.-a), and the organization has since developed a licensed workshop, “Two Paths Converge: Designing Educational Opportunities on the Intersections of Scholarly Communication and Information Literacy,” to continue outreach and advocacy around the Intersections (ACRL, n.d.-b). Though librarians have produced scholarship related to open education for over a decade, little has been written about the connection between open education (frequently housed within scholarly communication units) and information literacy. This chapter expands the Intersections discussion to include open educational resources (OER) and open pedagogy. It presents a case for the intersectional nature of open education and provides examples of how practitioners and advocates can leverage the common ground between scholarly communication and information literacy to create meaningful learning opportunities for a variety of audiences.


ACRL’s 2013 Intersections white paper grew from the recognition that our information ecosystem, and library roles within it, is changing at a rapid pace and that such dynamic change requires agility and strategic realignment of our traditional roles and responsibilities. It emphasized collaboration, both within and outside of libraries, as a mechanism for responding to the three intersections highlighted in the paper. Those intersections are the economics of the distribution of scholarship, digital literacies, and changing roles for librarians (p. 1). The paper’s authors noted the publication was intended to spark further conversation and the recommendations they put forth were only a small selection of possibilities for capitalizing on the interconnectedness of our work.

Another ACRL publication, Common Ground at the Nexus of Information Literacy and Scholarly Communication, edited by Stephanie Davis-Kahl and Merinda Kaye Hensley (2013), followed the white paper’s release and presented early examples of librarianship at the intersections. In the foreword, Joyce Ogborn wrote that information literacy and scholarly communication developed quite naturally without intersecting, though our changing landscape now requires that we think critically about the connections (p. v). Some of these connections are explored in the book’s 16 chapters. Though many chapters focus on including an undergraduate audience in scholarly communication education and outreach, audiences comprised of graduate students, faculty, and librarians are also discussed. In “Teaching Our Faculty: Developing Copyright and Scholarly Communication Outreach Programs,” for example, the chapter’s authors discuss the formation of a campus-wide copyright committee and its approach to developing an outreach program on the topic (Duncan, Clement, & Rozum, 2013). Similarly, a chapter about ACRL’s Scholarly Communication Roadshow describes how the group’s approach to professional development evolved over time to support the changing needs of librarians (Kirchner & Malenfant, 2013).

ACRL’s adoption of the Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education in 2016 bolstered the connection between scholarly communication and information literacy by directly referencing topics central to scholarly communication when defining information literacy. The Framework was born out of recognition that information literacy is complex and nuanced, and it offers a set of interconnected core concepts to guide our conversations with students, faculty, and other stakeholders. It presents six frames, each with a set of example knowledge practices and dispositions that are intended to be integrated into academic programs at a variety of levels. Though the Framework uses student-centric language to discuss information literacy, much of the document can also apply to teachable moments with faculty and administrators; this is particularly true through the example knowledge practices and dispositions that bleed into topics of scholarly communication. Areas of overlap include the production and commodification of information (“Information Creation as a Process” and “Information Has Value”), the value of collaboration in advancing knowledge (“Research as Inquiry”), the importance of access to information (“Searching as Strategic Exploration”), the significance of how authority is established and realized in different contexts (“Authority Is Constructed and Contextual”), and the recognition that systems of communication can enforce or dismantle information privilege (“Scholarship as Conversation”).

The growing body of literature around the Intersections and the Framework aren’t the only movements within libraries that advocate for exploring a deeper and more thoughtful connection between information literacy and scholarly communication. Practitioners of “critical information literacy” and, more broadly, “critical librarianship” aim to interrogate the role libraries play in reinforcing systems of oppression and to address how librarians can proactively shift practices to challenge existing power structures, inequities, and biases related to information seeking and construction in our work. Examples range from examining Library of Congress subject headings and identifying problematic patterns of classification (Drabinski, 2008) to reframing our approach to the “reference interview” as a dialog, as opposed to a transaction, that enables “student-generated transformative action” (Adler, 2013, p. 4). Critical information literacy is at its heart about social justice.

A popular example of critical information literacy and the Intersections comes from Scott Warren and Kim Duckett, who present strategies for introducing undergraduate students to complex issues of information access and commodification by deconstructing subscription and public resources and leading a conversation about the economics of information (2010). The authors describe how they experimented over time with integrating topics central to scholarly communication into information literacy instruction. Many of their instructional strategies were tested, revised, and improved within the context of an elective English course that typically attracts junior and senior science majors. The library session for the course is divided into two parts—the first focusing on active discussion of the scholarly communication cycle and issues inherent in it, and the second focusing on hands-on discovery of peer-reviewed information. Each instructional strategy is presented with discussion questions and learning resources. Together, the two build on these strategies in a later publication that more fully defines two intertwined but distinct frames of reference that inform their praxis (2013). The sociocultural frame of reference is useful for guiding conversations related to social constructs and norms within academic communities (e.g., peer review), and the economic frame of reference allows us to explore the business side of information exchange as we bridge discovery and access (e.g., toll access journals).

The Warren and Duckett example is an excellent illustration of how information literacy can prod the politics of knowledge production. This interrogation of knowledge production, and associated issues of information ownership and commodification, is also an area of emphasis for practitioners and advocates of open education, which is why incorporating information literacy and collaborating with those who work in this realm is crucial when designing outreach around OER and open pedagogy. Librarians are increasingly involved with coordinating and leading open education efforts on college and university campuses, as evidenced by contributions to the chapters in this field guide. This expansion of our roles warrants a deeper exploration of open education’s connection to information literacy and librarians’ long history of teaching within higher education.

Librarians as Teachers

A foundational principle presented in Intersections is that all academic librarians are teachers. Beyond that, the authors assert, “All roles in an academic library are impacted and altered by the changing nature of scholarly communication and the evolution of the dissemination of knowledge. Therefore, every librarian has a role in teaching, whether formally or informally, about scholarly communication issues” (p.4). Teaching in the context of academic libraries can take many forms, from providing in-person and online reference services to introducing patrons to archives and special collections. Librarians frequently hold consultations with faculty and students, offer workshops and seminars, and share expertise with other campus units. However, teaching is most closely associated with formal, course-integrated instruction targeting a student audience.

Evidence collected during ACRL’s Assessment in Action project, a three-year program that investigated how libraries impact student learning at over 200 post-secondary institutions from across North America, shows that libraries contribute to student success in four key ways (Brown, 2016). The group’s research suggests students benefit from (1) using the library and (2) collaborative partnerships between the library and other academic programs and services. The other key findings are related to library instruction. Specifically, students benefit from (3) library instruction during the early stages of their academic careers and (4) library integration into general education.

When we consider how library-led learning happens on college and university campuses, our focus tends to revolve around instruction occurring in a traditional classroom. Librarians have a long history of delivering formal instruction to groups of students, as noted by Barbara Fister in a collection of essays on new roles for librarians (2015). Instruction most frequently takes the form of the “one-shot” (that is, a single session delivered to students enrolled in a course offered by another department), though librarians may also be embedded in courses, providing an opportunity for interacting with students for the duration of a course, and sometimes teach credit-bearing classes. This focus on teaching and learning through instructional design and information literacy is not a new trend, nor does it appear to be reversing course anytime soon.

The 2016 Ithaka S+R survey of library deans and directors shows that positions and resource allocations that support teaching and research are expected to grow in the coming years, as was the case in the 2013 survey (Wolff-Eisenberg, 2017). It may not be surprising, then, that many of the early examples of librarianship at the intersections of scholarly communication and information literacy focused on integrating scholarly communication concepts into formal undergraduate instruction. Intersections literature provides examples of plagiarism and copyright curriculum implemented in a first-year-seminar program (Clement & Brenenson, 2013), development of a credit-bearing course on scholarly publishing (Gilman, 2013), and library integration into courses offered by an undergraduate research program (Hensley, 2013), among others. Such approaches provide valuable opportunities to engage students in higher-order thinking about information authorship, ownership, and privilege.

Still, the types of learning opportunities created by librarians are not limited to the classroom. Librarians commonly develop guides and tutorials in order to extend learning outside the walls of a classroom, though such resources are frequently connected to course-integrated instruction. Likewise, stand-alone workshops, such as those on copyright offered to faculty and graduate students by scholarly communication librarians, tend to mimic classroom settings. Although these types of learning opportunities are important, a growing number of librarians have written and presented on less formal strategies for approaching learning. Amy Buckland, for example, offers an elegant description of opportunities for engaging with students as creators of information by making student work available through institutional repositories and supporting student-run scholarly publishing (2015). This demonstrates a change in approach that positions the library as a partner rather than a resource and is an important distinction in our interactions with all members of our university communities.

Later in this chapter we’ll explore the intersectional nature of open education and related partnerships in more detail. First, we must briefly address the mechanics of learning. In How Learning Works, seven distinct yet interconnected principles of learning are presented, along with strategies for integrating each principle into teaching practices (Ambrose, Bridges, DiPietro, Lovett, & Norman, 2010). The principles, listed below, are based on the premise that learning is a process undertaken by the learner that results in lasting change and is influenced by prior experiences and knowledge:

  1. Students’ prior knowledge can help or hinder learning.
  2. How students organize knowledge influences how they learn and apply what they know.
  3. Students’ motivation determines, directs, and sustains what they do to learn.
  4. To develop mastery, students must acquire component skills, practice integrating them, and know when to apply what they have learned.
  5. Goal-directed practice coupled with targeted feedback enhances the quality of students’ learning.
  6. Students’ current level of development interacts with the social, emotional, and intellectual climate of the course to impact learning.
  7. To become self-directed learners, students must learn to monitor and adjust their approaches to learning. (pp. 4-6).

Though the book presents a variety of evidence-based strategies for facilitating learning, a recurring theme is the importance of collecting data to better understand learners’ needs and progress. It is worth noting that, like in the Framework, the language used in How Learning Works is student-centric; however, the authors do the important work of applying the principles to instructors in the book’s conclusion, recognizing that teaching is a complex and dynamic activity. The principles are applied specifically to self-directed reflection and learning about teaching, which is often voluntary and, particularly at research institutions, underemphasized. However, they are just as relevant to more formal situations in which faculty assume the role of students, such as in copyright, visibility, and publishing workshops led by librarians. As such, the seven principles provide a helpful frame for librarians to evaluate these types of learning opportunities.

Learning at the Intersections

Librarians most frequently emphasize students as the beneficiaries of our teaching and learning initiatives. However, the intersections present significant learning opportunities for faculty and administrators as well. To better understand this potential, it is useful to think critically about how our profession defines both information literacy and scholarly communication. In the Framework, ACRL defines information literacy as “the set of integrated abilities encompassing the reflective discovery of information, the understanding of how information is produced and valued, and the use of information in creating new knowledge and participating ethically in communities of learning.” Writing in Common Ground at the Nexus, Julia Gelfand and Catherine Palmer offer a helpful way of defining scholarly communication:

Information-literate members of the academy should understand how knowledge is created, evaluated, shared, and preserved. If we define scholarly communication as the ways in which subject knowledge is created (research methodology), evaluated (peer review), shared (through scholarly journal articles, monographs, conference proceedings, and research reports), and preserved (repositories writ large), then it is clear that an information-literate individual is one who understands both the issues and processes of scholarly communication. (2013, pp. 9–10).

Sarah Crissinger, reflecting on her work at the intersections on ACRL’s blog, takes this connection one step further and captures the essence of librarianship from an intersectional perspective:

I find the ways that scholarly communication is being infused with information literacy even more interesting and exciting, partly because I believe that IL can make scholarly communication outreach more holistic and approachable. One of the best examples of this is librarians’ outreach on altmetrics and impact factor. Asking faculty and graduate students to think critically about how we evaluate scholarship and what impact really means to them as scholars and information consumers is information literacy. (2015, italics in original)

The importance of such a holistic approach is emphasized by Shan Sutton in his review of the Intersections white paper, in which he advised libraries to “approach the integration process as an opportunity to rethink their faculty, as well as student, engagement across the entire spectrum of scholarly communications activities” (2013, p. 2). This focus on faculty engagement through an information literacy lens is an area of scholarship that deserves further exploration.

Numerous studies reveal gaps in faculty understanding of the issues and processes related to scholarly communication. A 2007 report from the University of California Office of Scholarly Communication and the California Digital Library eScholarship Program suggests that faculty are “under-informed” and disengaged with a range of topics central to scholarly communication (p. 3). A report on scholarly communication by the Center for Studies in Higher Education noted low recognition by faculty of the economic impact of scholarly publishing practices on libraries (i.e., the “serials crisis”), and by extension the communities they serve; beyond that, the report documented “quite a few” outright rejections of this impact (Harley, Acord, Earl-Novell, Lawrence, & King, 2010, p. 11), despite compelling evidence to the contrary (Suber, 2012; SQW Limited, 2003). Low awareness of institutional repositories has been reported by librarians investigating scholarly communication perceptions in their local contexts (Mischo & Schlembach, 2011; Odell, Dill, & Palmer, 2014; Yang & Li, 2015). Similarly, a survey of faculty members from 17 universities across the United States found that the majority of faculty were unaware of their institution’s repository (Kim, 2011, p. 249). Copyright, too, remains a challenge. Both anecdotal (Duncan et al., 2013) and empirical (Smith et al., 2006) evidence suggest faculty have limited familiarity with the complexities of copyright law and how it applies to their research and teaching practices. Such low awareness among faculty could cause concern for librarians interested in broaching similar topics with students. However, teachable moments frequently arise, particularly in course-integrated instruction, for deepening the understanding of both audiences simultaneously.

Opportunities in Open Education

Open education, with its emphasis on intellectual property rights and sharing, is fertile ground for exploring the competencies of the communities we serve through an information literacy lens. Low awareness of OER among faculty, as reported by the Babson Survey Research Group, shows there is much room for growth in this area (Allen & Seaman, 2016, p. 12). At the same time, library leaders continue to seek meaningful ways to demonstrate the value of the library and its impact on the organizational mission. It is becoming increasingly important for librarians at all levels to consider how our work aligns with these strategic priorities.

In some cases, the task of connecting learning opportunities to strategic priorities is straightforward and relatively effortless. In others, the task can be more problematic, often the result of outdated or nonexistent documentation. Still, our ability to clearly demonstrate connections between our efforts and the university’s priorities is essential, especially for new initiatives like those surrounding OER outreach and education. Natural connections between open education and institutional goals frequently include increasing affordability, supporting student success, fostering innovation, and producing impactful scholarship. Finally, though outreach about open education frequently occurs in one-on-one conversations and group discussions, the practice of drafting learning outcomes and assessment strategies can prove useful in guiding and focusing conversation in these and other informal teaching scenarios.

When designing learning experiences around open education, it is critical to consider the purpose of the learning experience alongside the audience for whom it is intended, as well as a method for assessing the success of the learning experience. Deb Gilchrist offers a popular formula for learning outcomes that sandwiches “in order to” between an action and an intention. Gilchrist recommends beginning each outcome with a strong, measurable action verb, such as those listed in Bloom’s Taxonomy. The way in which each verb is connected to a cognitive process should be considered, and verbs that are not measurable (e.g., understanding and knowing) should be avoided. The clause following “in order to” should describe the intention of the learning experience. That is, what should the learner be able to do as a result of the learning? Assessment of learning outcomes can take myriad forms—formal or informal and summative or formative—and should always be approached with the learner (not the teacher) at the forefront of the experience. In ACRL’s Intersections Workshop, which presents strategies for crafting outcomes for learning experiences, librarians are encouraged to ask themselves a series of simple questions to form the foundation for learning: Who is your audience? What is your purpose? How will you know if the learning happened? With these basic components defined, we can begin connecting learning opportunities for specific audiences to the strategic priorities of our libraries and institutions.

For example, most open education advocates have firsthand experience with faculty and administrators who have a fundamentally flawed understanding of how open licensing integrates with traditional copyright protections. Such misunderstandings of information ownership and transfer can derail conversations and pose significant challenges for advancing open initiatives, even when those initiatives are firmly connected to institutional priorities. It can be helpful to spend time in advance of important meetings and discussions brainstorming specific learning outcomes to guide these informal learning experiences. An outcome such as “evaluate information ownership and transfer in open vs. proprietary contexts” can increase agility in responding to questions and comments that demonstrate low understanding of information ownership, a concept essential to information literacy. Considering the specific action expected following the intervention can inform the second half of the outcome. For example, learning in this context may be planned in order to increase adoption of OER, increase the creation of open scholarship, or develop stronger communication channels about OER between university administrators and instructors.

Outreach within libraries is as crucial to the success of open education initiatives as it is with stakeholders outside of libraries. As new open education initiatives emerge within academic libraries, we need to guard against the tendency to develop programming within silos. Cheryl Middleton, ACRL president, suggested that all academic librarians must be competent in scholarly communication and warned against the trend of developing scholarly communication services in isolation from the work of subject librarians, many of whom are responsible for delivering information literacy instruction and working with faculty in their designated departments (2017). This is particularly important considering that open education efforts are most frequently oriented in scholarly communication units (Walz, Jensen, & Salem, 2016; Yano, 2017), though librarians responsible for information literacy have significant expertise in working with faculty to improve their courses and design better learning experiences.

The potential here is nicely illustrated in a Twitter thread by Zoe Fisher, a librarian who specializes in information literacy instruction (2017). Fisher described a dialog with first-year students in a one-shot session that demonstrates how naturally OER integrates into instructional scenarios with undergraduate students. Fisher reports that she received the question, “How does the library help students with textbooks?” The question, along with multiple follow-up questions from the students, provided an opportunity to introduce the freshmen to course reserves, the limited purchasing power of libraries and related shift to open resources, and existing options, such as buy-back and rental programs, intended to lower costs for students. The posts are an important reminder that opportunities to engage with students about OER will arise in our information literacy work whether we plan them or not. Advance, collaborative planning by open education advocates and information literacy and subject librarians to identify talking points and connections between open education and information literacy will allow us to reframe extemporaneous responses into teachable moments that deepen our students’ understanding of how information production and consumption impact our daily lives, both in academia and beyond.

Open education leaders can, of course, face numerous challenges getting librarians on board. Time constraints are a common barrier. Quill West, Amy Hofer, and Dale Coleman explore this and other findings in their report on the grant-funded Librarians as Open Education Leaders project (2017). The project website includes instructional videos and templates that can be used to ready subject librarians for supporting faculty interested in transitioning to OER. The resources serve as an important reminder that OER support is strikingly similar to any other reference consultation librarians provide. Focusing on these similarities—and emphasizing that OER consultations are guided by identifying and responding to an instructor’s information need—can help time-strapped librarians understand that supporting OER isn’t as foreign as it may otherwise seem and can be a very natural extension of services they already provide. Empowering our communities to understand and meet information needs is information literacy.

Numerous scholars both within and outside of libraries have argued that librarians cannot and should not fully own responsibility for information literacy, and the same is true when applying information literacy to open education. An exciting example of the convergence of open education and information literacy was presented by Billy Meinke, OER technologist at the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa, at the Open Education 2017 conference. Meinke presented on a workflow and support system intended to empower faculty by demystifying the OER design process. In planning the training to support the adaptation and creation of OER, Meinke mapped learning outcomes for faculty creators to the six frames described in the ACRL Framework. Foundational principles of OER, such as the significance of intellectual property rights, found natural homes in the “Authority Is Constructed and Contextual” and “Information Has Value” frames, while abilities related to OER creation and adaptation were better reflected in the “Information Creation as Process” frame. Technical skills, such as evaluating the technical adaptability of an OER and downloading a resource from a repository, were not mapped to a frame. In a paper submitted for the Open Education Global Conference in 2018, Meinke joined Reed in exploring the connections between each frame and topics related to open education, including the frames omitted from the original mapping. The paper merges technologist and librarian perspectives and probes issues of OER quality, collaboration, and student privacy.

Writing on the Open Oregon blog, Silvia Lin Hanick and Hofer argue that librarians should incorporate open practices into information literacy instruction rather than approaching them as distinct areas of focus (2017). They recommend opening our own teaching practices in order to model pedagogy for faculty. Additionally, they present connections between open education and the Framework that can guide scaffolding information literacy competencies into open assignments. For example, in exploring open education through the “Information Has Value” frame, the authors note that textbook costs make the commodification of information a “real-life problem” for students. OER is an excellent solution; however, oversimplifying OER by focusing on cost at the exclusion of effort and labor, which are not always compensated, does little to deepen students’ understanding of how information functions in a networked society.

There is, of course, potential for student involvement beyond classroom settings, which serves as an important reminder to think broadly about collaborative opportunities within our institutional contexts. Partners who can assist in developing, distributing, or otherwise augmenting learning experiences can be found within our library, across campus, and at external organizations, such as professional societies, nonprofits, advocacy groups, and government agencies. It is in the development of these partnerships that the greatest advances in open education are achieved. Take, for example, the success of BCcampus, a government-funded organization that supports teaching and learning in British Columbia’s public post-secondary education system. Since beginning an open textbook project in 2012, BCcampus has created over 160 textbooks, facilitated OER adoption in over 700 courses, and saved students over CA$2 million. Executive Director Mary Burgess attributes this success to multi-institutional collaboration, financial support from government agencies, student advocacy, an engaged staff, supportive campus partners, and strong relationships with international leaders in open education (2017).

In the United States, a growing number of state legislatures are drafting legislation that elevates open education in the public discourse and presents open education advocates with additional opportunities for partnerships that drive culture change and advance the values of open education. For example, in 2017 the Texas State Legislature signed into a law a bill that added OER to an existing textbook disclosure law and established a statewide grant program to support the adoption and creation of OER. The law requires that institutions of higher education provide searchable information allowing students to filter by courses that use only OER. Similar policies were implemented in Washington, Oregon, and California; these and other state-level activities impacting open education are tracked and curated by the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) on the OER State Policy Tracker.1 Such top-down initiatives, such as OER disclosure mandates, present a need for open education advocates to carefully consider strategic options for creating learning experiences that educate faculty and administrators about OER. Proactive and thoughtful outreach in this area can reduce the backlash of “unfunded mandates” that could otherwise pollute growth and result in concerns over academic freedom.


The heightened attention on OER can also catalyze pedagogical change, particularly at institutions that have adopted experiential learning (learning by doing) or collaboration as a strategic priority. Though the definition of “open pedagogy” is contested, it is broadly conceived as a practice that empowers students as content creators by giving them the opportunity to demonstrate mastery through the act of creation. In the introduction to Critical Library Instruction, the editors describe their praxis as one that “respects what each student brings to the classroom” (Accardi, Drabinski, & Kumbier, 2010, p. x), which is how practitioners of open pedagogy often describe their work. Open pedagogy hinges on student agency within an authentic and collaborative learning environment. It challenges traditional roles of teacher and student and has the potential to transform the educational experience. However, there are significant concerns that demand sensitivity when transitioning to open practices. Robin DeRosa explores some of these considerations in writing about her experiences collaborating with students in the open (2016); she touches on concerns related to access (considering students without or new to technology), production (considering privilege and the hidden costs of labor), and privacy and safety (considering trolling and digital identities). When thoughtfully approached, however, this style of pedagogy offers an excellent opportunity for faculty to work collaboratively with both scholarly communication librarians, leveraging their expertise in copyright and visibility, and information literacy librarians, leveraging their expertise in assignment design and classroom management. The result is often elevated levels of student engagement and motivation, deeper connections with content and collaborators, and higher levels of satisfaction with outputs of the learning experience.


Libraries are experiencing a number of pressures that require innovative thinking, flexibility, and critical reflection. Responding to this pressure, ACRL’s publication of the Intersections white paper has resulted in a growing interest and energy around the common ground between information literacy and scholarly communication. Librarians writing on the intersections have introduced multiple ways that topics of scholarly communication can be integrated into undergraduate outreach and education.

Less has been written about applying the lessons learned from information literacy initiatives to outreach with faculty or connecting libraries’ extensive experience with information literacy to our work in open education. The strategy presented in this chapter— of focusing on learning experiences and tailoring each to a specific audience and purpose— is one method for approaching those connections. The examples included in this chapter, such as mapping open education learning outcomes to the Framework, leveraging undergraduate instruction to introduce students to course resource options, and collaborating with other librarians to scale support for OER, are only a starting point for developing meaningful outreach and education about open educational practices. There is significant room for further exploration.

As libraries are faced with dwindling budgets and increasing demand to demonstrate the value of our contributions to the university community, it is important to consider the ways in which we can collaborate with partners both within and outside our libraries to advance work in support of institutional priorities. Framing our work within open education in the context of information literacy can be a useful anchor and a persistent reminder that we are almost always acting in a teaching capacity, even when we are not working directly with students in a classroom. Such an approach fosters greater intentionality, improved outcomes, and stronger partnerships.


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OER: A Field Guide for Academic Librarians | Editor's Cut Copyright © 2018 by Christy Allen; Nicole Allen; Jean Amaral; Alesha Baker; Chelle Batchelor; Sarah Beaubien; Geneen E. Clinkscales; William Cross; Rebel Cummings-Sauls; Kirsten N. Dean; Carolyn Ellis; David Francis; Emily Frank; Teri Gallaway; Arthur G. Green; Sarah Hare; John Hilton III; Cinthya Ippoliti; DeeAnn Ivie; Rajiv S. Jhangiani; Michael LaMagna; Anne Langley; Jonathan Lashley; Shannon Lucky; Jonathan Miller; Carla Myers; Julie Reed; Michelle Reed; Lillian Hogendoorn; Heather M. Ross; Matthew Ruen; Jeremy Smith; Cody Taylor; Jen Waller; Anita Walz; Andrew Wesolek; Andrea Wright; Brady Yano; and Stacy Zemke is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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