Igniting a spirit of inquiry in students

For Immediate Release
Fri, 01/18/2019


Rob Christopher

Marketing Coordinator

ALA Publishing

American Library Association



CHICAGO — In our technology-saturated world, all the answers we seek are at our fingertips. Right? Though students might think so, educators know otherwise. But beyond merely helping students find answers to questions, information literacy instruction ought to ignite within students a spirit of inquiry: a discerning curiosity that will spur them to dig deeper when conducting research. In “Inquiry and Research: A Relational Approach in the Classroom,” published by ALA Editions, Michelle Reale outlines such an approach. Showing how to deprioritize tools-based research in favor of encouraging critical thinking, in this book she:

  • demonstrates why inquiry is the first step towards deep learning, and why it should begin with asking the right questions rather than finding the right answers;
  • presents strategies for viewing curiosity as a process;
  • shares methods and techniques that will kindle a spirit of inquiry, from discussion questions and reflective journals to one-on-one consultations and classroom workshops;
  • shows how I-Search assignments can offer students valuable guidance and encouragement to think; and
  • discusses how collaboration and communication with faculty can help lead to information literacy instruction that focuses on the conceptual rather than tools.

Reale is an associate professor and head of access services and outreach at Arcadia University near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Her previous books include “The Indispensable Academic Librarian: Teaching and Collaborating for Change,” “Becoming a Reflective Librarian and Teacher: Strategies for Mindful Academic Practice,” and “Mentoring & Managing Students in the Academic Library.”

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