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Library Instruction Services for Faculty: Session Topics


Advanced Search Concepts (Recommended for upper level research courses) 

Advanced searching introduces students to subject specific concepts and databases.  This can vary between fields but often includes subject heading searching and identifying types of academic journal articles such as original research articles.

Session Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify and use discipline-specific terminology in a search
  • Execute search functions of discipline-specific databases


Basic Search Concepts (Recommended for ENGL 101 and 202) 

This session focuses on the difference between natural language (Google) and keyword (Library databases) search strategies.  This hands on session works best when they students have a research topic to search with.

Session Learning Outcomes:

  • Articulate the difference between Google and library search engines
  • Identify appropriate keywords and related terms
  • Identify the 3 major library database providers
  • Execute the basic search functions of at least one of the 3 major databases


Information Evaluation (Recommended for ENGL 100 and 101)

Information evaluation focuses on identifying types of information using the Information pyramid and evaluating information  using the CRAP method.  This hands-on session introduces students to the IUP Discovery search and asks them to identify and evaluate a piece of information related to their research topic.

Session Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify information types using the Information Pyramid
  • Evaluate information using the CRAP method
  • Execute the basic search functions of the Discovery Search


Research Question Development (Recommended for ENGL 100 and 101)

This session focuses on the process of developing a research question.  Students will specifically work to identify background questions and foreground questions and use the sources that are best suited to each type of research question such as encyclopedias and article databases.

 Session Learning Outcomes:

  • Generate background and foreground research questions
  • Understand the iterative nature of research
  • Use print and electronic reference sources such as encyclopedias for background research
  • Use the IUP Library Discovery search for foreground questions

Why can't I cite it like a Website?

This session helps students identify different types of information in online environments and match those with the formatting options provided in APA and MLA style.  We also discuss the concept of container collapse and why this makes it difficult to cite correctly.

Session Learning Outcomes:
  • Identify different types of information online
  • Match those information types with MLA and APA citation formats

Search Strategies

This session covers the 4 basic types of search strategies and which type is most helpful for different types of research assignments such as debates, argumentative and position assignments, literature reviews and summaries, and theory-based assignments.

Session Learning Outcomes:
  • Execute 4 types of search strategies
  • Choose a search strategy based on the type of assignment

Fake News

This session covers a brief history of fake news, some of the reasons that it spreads quickly, and techniques to combat fake news.

Session Learning Outcomes:
  • Identify fake news in online environments
  • Implement strategies to combat the spread of fake news

Managing and Synthesizing Information

This session covers organization strategies for keeping track of research as well as one method for synthesizing information without summarizing each source.

Session Learning Outcomes:

  • Use MyEbscohost, MyProquest, and One Drive to save articles
  • Use Excel to synthesize and manage information

Schedule Instruction

All of the session topics can be customized to work with your syllabus and assignments.  Use the Request Instruction form to set up a session.