On Google Glass and Empathic Teaching

Recently, my library embarked on a Google Glass adventure. There’s so much to say about Glass and its implications, but for this particular post, I’m going to focus on one particular use case.

It's me! Wearing Glass!

It’s me! Wearing Glass!

I’ve seen several blogs which suggest the same use case for Glass in the classroom: Have students wear Glass to record their experiences in class, on field trips, and throughout their day. The site I’ve linked to suggests that these videos could then be rewatched by students so that they can think critically about their experiences, analyzing why they make certain choices by revisiting those moments over and over. But what if a teacher asked a student to record their experience in class, and then the teacher viewed that student’s experience? Glass, I would argue, provides serious opportunities for empathic teaching.

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Filed under Education, Library Instruction, Posts by Dani Brecher

Friday Quote

 “We don’t take the time to be vulnerable with each other.”

-John Cassavetes


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Filed under Education, On Being Human, Posts by Kevin Michael Klipfel

On Convention

Conventional people are roused to fury by departure from convention, largely because they regard such departure as a criticism of themselves. 

-Bertrand Russell


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Filed under Education, Posts by Kevin Michael Klipfel, The Library Game

Information Literacy and Fact-Checking for Reliability: An Applied Epistemology for Evaluating Information

Information literacy is concerned with what is “true”: what kinds of things we should believe, what kinds of things we shouldn’t, and how we can tell the difference. It is, therefore, the task of information literacy librarians to help students articulate and apply reliable criteria to answer the questions, “Out of all the information that’s out there, what should I believe?” “How do I know?”

You can see, then, that teaching information literacy well will probably not be easy.  Like philosophy, it deals with some of the most fundamental  human questions relating to truth and knowledge. Unlike philosophy (maybe), it does so in a practical way.  Information literacy is a kind of applied epistemology: it aims to give students criteria to apply so they can figure out what types of information they should use to construct their beliefs about the world.

Here’s a bit more about what I mean.

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Filed under Education, Library Instruction, Posts by Kevin Michael Klipfel

Easy Bib “Communicating the Value of Information Literacy Instruction” Video

A video of our EasyBib webinar, “Communicating the Value of Information Literacy,” is now posted on YouTube:

We hope that the presentation may be of some use to librarians who are tasked with the job of working with other faculty to embed information literacy into their university curriculum.

Thanks again to Emily Gover and the rest of the EasyBib folks for having invited us back, and for the great questions we recieved from attendees!

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Filed under Education, Library Instruction, Posts by Kevin Michael Klipfel

Higher Education Is Odd

Higher education is odd in that we don’t typically teach teachers how to teach, students how to learn, or administrators how to lead. As a result, more than a few students end up with methods that are ineffective or even an impediment to learning.

Todd Zakrajek, as quoted by Jeannie Loeb, in her preface to The New Science of Learning

Let’s hope that this is increasingly less true for instruction librarians!

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Filed under Education, Library Instruction, Posts by Kevin Michael Klipfel

The Republican Attack on Federal Funding for Libraries (And What You Can Do to Stop It)

Well, according to this dismal piece of news, Wisconsin’s Ayn Rand obsessed supporter of privatization, Republican Congressman Paul Ryan, has decided to try out his very bad ideas on libraries:

In a new budget released today from Representative Paul Ryan (R-WI), the House Budget Committee Chairman denounces the critical role that the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) plays in supporting civic engagement, literacy and lifelong learning in more than 123,000 libraries nationwide. Rep. Ryan recommends that the federal government not have a role in libraries and that Congress shift the federal agency’s responsibilities to the private sector in his 2015 fiscal year budget resolution.

This is, obviously, morally reprehensible legislation, for reasons ALA President Barbara Stripling notes here.

That libraries remain, so far as possible, socialized forces immune to the demands of the capitalized market is central to the unique place libraries have in American society. As writer Zadie Smith puts it,

A library is a different kind of social reality … which by its very existence teaches a system beyond the fiscal.

ALA gives several reasonable suggestions for what you can do to stop legislation like this, which would harm lots of people for whom public libraries provide their only access to technology (one in five Americans do not have internet access) and is, as one commentator has noted, “a bad idea for American society:”

Moving forward, the American Library Association is asking library users, students, parents and teachers to contact their U.S. Senators and Representatives by going to the Legislative Action Center and urge them to support funding in the 2015 fiscal year for the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) and Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL).

It is interesting to note that, according to a piece in Library Journal, President Stripling is “less worried about the proposal itself than she is about the sentiments that underlie it.”

Ryan on Rand

Perhaps worth keeping in mind the next time you recommend Atlas Shrugged!

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Filed under ...Etc., Education, On Being Human, Posts by Kevin Michael Klipfel, The Library Game