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‘ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS’
CO-DELIVERING ACTIVITY-BASED CLASSES AT MAYNOOTH UNIVERSITY
LAI / CILIP IRELAND JOINT AN...
ABOUT US
CATHERINE
 Library Assistant, Engagement and Information
Services
 Private sector information management
experi...
WHAT WE’LL TALK ABOUT
 A new approach to teaching in MU Library
 Activity-based classes to improve learning outcomes
 C...
 Teach classes – mapped to our
Information Literacy Framework
 Develop online resources and
tutorials
 Provide research...
WHY CHOOSE A FUNCTIONAL MODEL?
Changing curriculum
A Maynooth Education
Critical Skills programme
Information Literacy
Fra...
A NEW CURRICULUM WITH A KEY FOCUS ON CRITICAL SKILLS
‘…graduates are expected to be … capable of gathering and critiquing
...
• Mapping & evaluating the
information landscape
•Managing & presenting
information
•Managing the transition
•Understandin...
WHAT DOES AN ‘ACTIVITY BASED’ CLASS LOOK LIKE?
Use online survey
tool Menti to check
in with the students
and establish th...
Standardised lesson
plans, customised for
each class
Timed
Pre-class activities
Structured class
activities based on
learn...
WHAT’S THE BENEFIT OF ACTIVITY-BASED CLASSES?
 Activity is where the learning happens
 Activities are often simple e.g. ...
HOW WE GOT THERE
 Attending classes to observe teaching in an academic context
 The process evolved – room set up, helin...
CO-DELIVERY IN PRACTICE
Room set up
Removing barriers
Welcome and orientation
Importance of planning
Working together – tr...
FEEDBACK
 Lecturer in the class where possible – the
class becomes a shared learning
environment between academic and
lib...
RECOMMENDATIONS
 Consider who is most suited for the role – personality matters here!
 Think about what will work for yo...
COMING UP
Surveying students
post-class (via
Moodle)
More differentiated
activities (for students at
different skill level...
THANK YOU
CONTACT US
AINE.CAREY@MU.IE CATHERINE.AHEARNE@MU.IE
HTTPS://NUIM.LIBGUIDES.COM/GUIDES_TUTORIALS
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‘Actions speak louder than words’: co-delivering activity-based classes at MU Library Áine Carey, Catherine Ahearne

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In 2017, MU Library’s Teaching & Research Development team moved from a subject-based model of library support to a functional model, based around the core functions of our team i.e. Research Support; Academic Engagement; and Teaching & Learning.

Central to this change was the development of a new teaching programme, to be multi-disciplinary and standardised in approach, and considering information literacy provision in its widest context. The teaching programme is mapped to MU Library’s Information Literacy Strategy Framework. Classes under the programme were first delivered in 2018.

Our teaching programme focuses on activity-based classes to achieve the five IL competencies identified in our Framework.

In our presentation, we will explain the context and background to our decision to move to a functional model, with reference to the University’s new undergraduate curriculum, which focuses on critical skills, offers students opportunities to engage in experiential learning, and provides a multi-disciplinary focus for student module choices.

Aine will describe the process of creating a menu of class options with standardised lesson plans and content for our classes, and the pedagogical practice of student learning through active engagement.

She will give examples of this work in practice, showcasing tools used (e.g. Mentimeter software) and activities undertaken, and talk about the successes and areas for learning arising from the classes.

However, a key focus of our paper is to look at the practical aspect of class delivery and the benefits to co-delivery of these classes. How does this work in practice?

Catherine will share her experience of co-delivering the classes, and describe her role, offering recommendations about successful delivery of activity-based classes.

We hope conference attendees will find our session practical, thought-provoking and will be able to take away some ideas for similar classes in their library, in whichever sector.

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‘Actions speak louder than words’: co-delivering activity-based classes at MU Library Áine Carey, Catherine Ahearne

  1. 1. ‘ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS’ CO-DELIVERING ACTIVITY-BASED CLASSES AT MAYNOOTH UNIVERSITY LAI / CILIP IRELAND JOINT ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2019 KILLASHEE HOTEL, NAAS 10 APRIL 2019 CATHERINE AHEARNE ÁINE CAREY TEACHING RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT TEAM, MU LIBRARY
  2. 2. ABOUT US CATHERINE  Library Assistant, Engagement and Information Services  Private sector information management experience  Worked with TRD on projects arising from implementation of new model ÁINE  Manage Teaching and Research Development team  Functional model based on Teaching & Learning, Research Support, and Academic Engagement  How our classes evolved following introduction of our new functional model
  3. 3. WHAT WE’LL TALK ABOUT  A new approach to teaching in MU Library  Activity-based classes to improve learning outcomes  Co-delivering classes to enhance learning environment  What we did and why we did it  Our observations on the process  The next steps
  4. 4.  Teach classes – mapped to our Information Literacy Framework  Develop online resources and tutorials  Provide research support – bibliometrics, open access, research visibility, classes for academic staff, PhD students, researchers  Engage with academic staff via library reps and Heads of Departments – a holistic service, mutually beneficial Teaching & Learning Academic Liaison Research Support Academic Engagement TRD Functional Model
  5. 5. WHY CHOOSE A FUNCTIONAL MODEL? Changing curriculum A Maynooth Education Critical Skills programme Information Literacy Framework Reach of subject librarian Gaps and overlap in class delivery Changing information landscape Where does our expertise lie? Growing, diverse student population Varied information needs Skills Enhancement Adding value to what we do Meeting higher-level skills acquisition
  6. 6. A NEW CURRICULUM WITH A KEY FOCUS ON CRITICAL SKILLS ‘…graduates are expected to be … capable of gathering and critiquing information from a variety of sources’ (Maynooth University, 2015)
  7. 7. • Mapping & evaluating the information landscape •Managing & presenting information •Managing the transition •Understanding ethical & social dimensions of information •Researching within the disciplines Deep Knowledge Critical intellectual skills Autonomous and responsible learners Breadth of perspective Skills for life and work Information Literacy Framework for ‘A Maynooth Education’ Successful Searching By the end of this session, your students should be able to effectively find academic information and use library resources. This can be tailored to any subject. Evaluating Information Students will develop their ability to evaluate information and thereby find the information most relevant for use in their assignments. Databases in your subject Students will learn how to access and navigate some of the top recommended databases in their subject area. Referencing and Avoiding Plagiarism Students will learn to recognise plagiarism, improve their knowledge of referencing and develop skills for managing their references
  8. 8. WHAT DOES AN ‘ACTIVITY BASED’ CLASS LOOK LIKE? Use online survey tool Menti to check in with the students and establish their expectations
  9. 9. Standardised lesson plans, customised for each class Timed Pre-class activities Structured class activities based on learning outcomes
  10. 10. WHAT’S THE BENEFIT OF ACTIVITY-BASED CLASSES?  Activity is where the learning happens  Activities are often simple e.g. navigate to your subject guide  Promote engagement and agency  Focused on idea of a threshold concept and bringing students to that point  ‘Gentle’ way to encourage participation at more in-depth level, gauge class ability and individual challenges
  11. 11. HOW WE GOT THERE  Attending classes to observe teaching in an academic context  The process evolved – room set up, heling students in difficulties  Reflection – what was working well in the class?  Natural partnership emerged – Áine leading the class and engaging in activities; Catherine observing, intervening to support, troubleshooting, and unobtrusively assisting reluctant / nervous students  Form of feedback for instructor – a fresh perspective
  12. 12. CO-DELIVERY IN PRACTICE Room set up Removing barriers Welcome and orientation Importance of planning Working together – true co-delivery Providing assistance at point-of-need to students Feedback and review of class
  13. 13. FEEDBACK  Lecturer in the class where possible – the class becomes a shared learning environment between academic and librarian  Lecturers love it!  Often report they learn a lot too!  Students positive but it is class-dependent  Sometimes you have to work a bit harder to engage the students but we haven’t had any class that hasn’t worked  We want to get more structured student feedback
  14. 14. RECOMMENDATIONS  Consider who is most suited for the role – personality matters here!  Think about what will work for you, your team, your students – start slowly, with introductory activities  Be adaptable – you need to spot who is having trouble, and move between students frequently  Instructor needs to use activity time to gauge student learning, and adapt, shorten or expand activities to meet student level  Sometimes you might have to change approach quite significantly – e.g. based on initial student feedback  Utilise the team member assisting for this
  15. 15. COMING UP Surveying students post-class (via Moodle) More differentiated activities (for students at different skill levels) Continue to link class activities to student assignments – make them as relevant as possible for students More pre-class activities i.e. online quizzes, tutorials on navigating the online library
  16. 16. THANK YOU CONTACT US AINE.CAREY@MU.IE CATHERINE.AHEARNE@MU.IE HTTPS://NUIM.LIBGUIDES.COM/GUIDES_TUTORIALS

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