ANNUAL REPORT 1997-1998
Randy Burke Hensley, Chair

In Fall, 1997, each committee and task force of the Section identified short-term and long-term activities to be accomplished. The short-term activities would be completed by ALA Annual Conference, 1998. The long- term activities would be started in 1997-98 but could be completed some time in the future. These activities relate to the charges of the committees and task forces and the Instruction Section Strategic Plan.

The Instruction Section Strategic Plan relates to the ACRL Strategic Plan. A report to ACRL that articulates the Section's activities as they relate to the ACRL Strategic Plan has been submitted and is based on this annual report.

The Instruction Section Planning Committee gathered information from the Section's committees and task forces about the status of the short-term and long-term activities. This annual report is a summary of that progress. It is organized according to the goals of the Instruction Section Strategic Plan. An activity that addresses a Strategic Direction from the Instruction Section Strategic Plan is identified in parentheses with "SD" and Strategic Direction number. The Strategic Direction statement can be found in the Instruction Section Strategic Plan.

GOAL 1: IS enhances the ability of academic and research librarians to collaborate with higher education professionals in improving higher education and preparing students for lifelong learning.

The Awards Committee conducted the selection process for the recipient of the Miriam Dudley Instruction Librarian of the Year Award. This award recognizes leadership and influence in academic library instruction activities(SD 1.1).

The Instruction For Diverse Populations Committee has begun a study of the library's role in the retention of diverse student populations at higher education institutions(SD 1.2).

The Executive Committee identified one its members to serve on the National Information Literacy Institute Planning Group in order to support the development of this new entity; the goal of NILI is to enhance the abilities of instructional librarians to impact higher education and to foster information literacy activities(SD 1.1 and 1.2).

GOAL 2: IS enhances the ability of academic and research librarians to provide excellent library instruction to their users.

The Awards Committee conducted the selection process for the Innovation in Instruction Award which recognizes achievement in the design and execution of library instruction activities(SD 2.3).

The Continuing Education Committee sponsored two ALA Midwinter Conference Discussion Forums about the National Information Literacy Institute and Managing the Electronic Classroom. These forums provided opportunities to explore instructional problems and issues(SD 2.2).

The Emerging Technologies in Instruction Committee continued to support the Internet Education Project by assisting in the identification of innovative instruction websites, by assisting in the maintaining of an Internet repository for identified sites, and by publicizing the availability of this repository(SD 2.3). This committee also investigated synchronous and asynchronous communication structures(MOO's, MUDS; IRC's) for possible application to information literacy activities(SD 2.3). This committee has begun an exploration of the use of interactive Internet discussion forums to gather educators and instruction librarians with diverse backgrounds to discuss the use of technology in teaching(SD 2.2 and 2.3).

The Glossary Project Task Force is nearing the completion of a web-based multi-lingual dictionary of library terminology for use by instruction librarians working with diverse populations(SD 2.4).

The Instruction For Diverse Populations Committee is working on a survey of the information-seeking behavior of ethnic groups(SD 2.4).

The Management of Instructional Services Committee began a process for investigating present mechanisms to evaluate the management of instructional services(SD 2.2) and provided an opportunity at the ALA Midwinter Conference to brainstorm instruction services management issues(SD 2.2). This committee is also exploring the feasibility of creating a website that would include a management consultants list and tips for new instruction services managers(SD 2.3).

The Preconference Program Planning 1998, Washington, D.C. Task Force has planned a repeat of the 1997 Learning To Teach Preconference which promotes excellence in instruction(SD 2.2).

The Model Statement of Objectives Task Force began a process of reviewing the 1991 Model Statement of Objectives in order to improve the currency and relevancy of this document(SD 2.1).

The Skills Areas for Instruction Librarians Task Force is examining the need for and value of the Section identifying skills areas necessary to perform the responsibilities of an instruction librarian in an academic setting(SD 2.5).

The Teaching Methods Committee began a project to gather information about current techniques and approaches related to distance education pedagogy and information literacy(SD 2.3).

GOAL 3: IS promotes study, research, publication and other development opportunities for academic and research instruction librarians. The Active Learning Sourcebook Task Force has submitted a manuscript to ACRL for publication that provides strategies, assignments and scenarios for teaching information literacy through active learning methodologies (SD 3.3).

The Awards Committee conducted a selection process for the Publication Award which recognizes a significant research contribution to the field of instruction(SD 3.2).

The Conference Program Planning 1998 Committee has prepared a program for the 1998 ALA Annual Conference, "Research With a Small r: Approaches for the Instruction Practitioner" which will present rationale and strategies for effective, practical research related to instructional services (SD 3.3).

The Continuing Education Committee has conducted a Continuing Education Needs and Interests Survey and has disseminated its findings in order to assist the Section in identifying topics and issues for activities (SD 3.5). This committee is also surveying state and regional library organizations for their continuing education needs and has established a continuing education website(SD 3.4 and 3.5).

The Education For Library Instructors Committee is identifying accredited and un-accredited schools teaching library and information studies that offer credit courses, workshops and other significant resources in library and information use instruction. This data will be used to support the work of the National Information Literacy Institute and continuing education activities for the Section(SD 3.3 and 3.4). This committee is also developing a website of resources suitable for providing support to library education faculty who are teaching courses or components of courses about information literacy; this site can also be used by individual librarians needing support for their information literacy related activities(SD 3.3). This committee continues to maintain and expand the annotated bibliography of instruction-related articles and books on its website; it also is working on creating a section of this bibliography for masters theses and doctoral dissertations related to information literacy(SD 3.1, 3.2 and 3.3). This committee is working on a proposal about how the Section can foster practicum programs in library schools that build instructional skills for information literacy(SD 3.4).

The Executive Committee has established a Virtual Task Force that has been charged with developing a web-based continuing education opportunity with the content of the Learning to Teach Preconference(SD 3.3). This committee will experiment with a structure that does not require its members to attend ALA conferences but instead accomplishes their charge by means of Internet and telecommunications. This committee also established a ACRL National Conference Task Force that has been charged with developing a program about distance education and information literacy for the ACRL Conference in 1999(SD 3.3). This committee has also submitted an ACRL Initiative Funding proposal for a Think Tank III that will explore developments in educational technology as they relate to information literacy; the task force would establish an agenda of issues to be addressed regarding technology and instruction(SD 3.1, 3.2, and 3.3).

The Preconference Program Planning 2000 Task Force is preparing a proposal for a program for the 2000 ALA Annual Conference(SD 3.3).

The Research & Scholarship Committee which was established this year, is identifying critical knowledge areas where current research findings can foster more effective instruction; it will also identify and implement strategies to bring critical-area research knowledge to the attention of instruction librarians(SD 3.2).

GOAL 4: IS collaborates with professional organizations within and outside of ALA to promote mutual interests.

The Continuing Education Committee's website and projects related to library schools support this goal(SD 4.1, 4.5, 4.6, 4.7).

The Emerging Technologies In Instruction Committee's Internet Education Project website supports this goal(SD4.2 and 4.3).

The Executive Committee's activities related to the National Information Literacy Institute and its Think Tank III proposal as it involves cooperation with the ACRL Internet Education Project and the ACRL Alliance for New Directions in Teaching and Learning Discussion Group support this goal(SD 4.1 and 4.2).

The Membership Committee regularly liaisons with the ALA New Members Round Table and the ACRL Membership Committee(SD 4.1).

The Research & Scholarship Committee is establishing contacts with other research-focused ALA committees(SD 4.1).

GOAL 5: IS maintains a prominent planning and decision-making role to influence information policy at the national level.

The Communication Committee and the Section's website/listserv administrator through an appointment to the ACRL Web Task Force are exploring ramifications of web technology and organization activities (SD 5.1 and 5.2).

The Policy Committee is writing a position paper on archiving the Section website and websites in general(SD 5.1).

GOAL 6: IS ensures that its operating environment provides efficient use of resources and effective delivery of support services to its members and constituent units.

The Continuing Education and Education For Library Instructors committees are examining the ways the two committee charges overlap, where the two committees can work together, and the advisability of combining the two committees(SD 6.2).

The Executive Committee acted on the recommendation of the Communication Committee to establish the position of website/listserv administrator for the Section to manage these elements of its organizational structure; the administrator developed and implemented a re-design of the Section website that provides greater clarity and efficiency in its structure(SD 6.3). The Executive Committee has moved conference meeting schedules from its Section newsletter to the website(SD 6.3). It has also begun to maintain an archive of past Section newsletters on the website, and it has moved the distribution of committee/task force minutes to the website as the primary vehicle for distribution(SD 6.3).

The Membership Committee has developed and implemented a process of surveying individuals who have recently terminated their membership in the Section(SD 6.4).

The Planning Committee is identifying and implementing more efficient strategies for planning and evaluation of Section activites, and has been brought more centrally into the yearly annual report and Section assessment functions(SD 6.2). This committee is also developing a proposal for Section review to be implemented in 1998-99(SD 6.2 and 6.4).

The Policy Committee has developed a procedure for handling violations of the ACRL Guide to Policies and Procedures(SD 6.4). This committee has also reviewed the ACRL/IS Preconference Planning Manual, the ACRL/IS Publications Policies and Procedures Manual, and has revised the Guidelines for Archival Retention document(SD 6.2).

 


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