Library Instruction Program: FAQ

Library Instruction FAQs

When should I schedule a session?
Library instruction is most valuable when it is related to a research assignment. This allows students to have the opportunity to immediately apply what they have learned during the instruction session. Ideally, sessions should be scheduled prior to students starting on a research assignment. Another appropriate time is early in the research process when students have just started working on their assignment. Students should be informed about the assignment before the instruction session, and should have at least a general research topic in mind. 

How much lead time do I need?
Allow a minimum of one week advance notice for your request. There is extemely high demand for library instruction during fall and spring semesters and in order to accommodate your preferred dates is it helpful to "book early."

What happens after I submit my request?
Once your request has been submitted an email with your information is sent out to the library's instruction listserv. Once a librarian picks up your request s/he wil contact you via email with the schedule time/date/location for the session. The librarian may also ask for a copy of your syllabus and/or research assignment. This information is important in allowing the librarian to understand the context of your course, the research expectations for your students, and ensure that the instruction session is well sequenced.

Where does library instruction usually take place?
The library has two electronic classrooms located on the Lower Level that are reserved for library instruction: Room 024 (32 workstations) and Room 026 (20 workstations). Each room is equipped with desktop computers and wireless access for laptops. Librarians primarily teach instruction sessions in the library classrooms but can come to your classroom, on or off campus, for an instruction session as needed. The library has laptops that can be checked out or students are welcome to bring their own device.

Do I need to be with my students during the session?
Yes. The instructor should be present to emphasize important information and answer questions related to the assignment.

What are some topics that librarians can cover?
Instruction sessions are customized to the needs of your students. Each session highlights sources that are relevant to a specific subject area or assignment. Beyond instructing students on how to find information, we cover key concepts such as evaluating information, using sources effectively, using information ethically, and other information literacy skills.

My request was not scheduled what do I do?
Occassionally we have more requests for instruction that we can handle and may not be able to accommodate your preferred instruction dates/time. You may be asked to resubmit your request with alternate dates/times and we will do our best to schedule a library instruction session for you and your students.