Update on the Welsh Information Literacy Project



Update from Siona Murray, Welsh Information Literacy Project Officer.

UNESCO Information Literacy logoThis article is intended to provide an update on the Welsh Information Literacy Project (WILP)activities over the past year and highlight the objectives for 2013-2014. Phase IV of the project was awarded to the North Wales Library Partnership (NWLP) and Coleg Llandrillo Library in April 2014.

The main aims and objectives of this next phase include:

  • Facilitate the embedding of information literacy (IL) activities and skills in public libraries and schools, with the addition of extending support to end users.
  • Supporting local authorities and selected schools to run pilot projects incorporating information literacy frameworks.
  • Extending the case study and shared resource database to support other groups to incorporate information literacy activities into teaching pedagogies.
  • Establish a network of FE and HE information literacy champions through a collaborative community of practice (CoP).
  • Inform the development of Hŵb, specifically in terms of developing information literacy content for the all Wales Virtual Learning Environment (VLE).
  • Develop a sustainable exit strategy for the project and associated activities.
Welsh Information Literacy Project at Umbrella 2013
WILP at Umbrella 2013. Image courtesy of @KrisWJ via Twitter

Over the past few months, our project officers have been gathering evidence of the pilot activities from schools and public libraries involved in Phase III. Project officers have been working with Ysgol Uwchradd Caerbybi in North Wales and Llanishen School in South Wales specifically. Full findings will be available later this summer; however we can report that initial findings are very positive. IL activities in Ysgol Uwchradd Caerbybi indicate that 69% of the students involved in the pilot support group displayed an increase in their Standardised Literacy Scores (SAS) of 4.4 points on average. This is a significant positive result, with one member of the group increasing their SAS by 8 points. The project will be establishing contacts with additional schools for Phase IV and we plan to have at least 10 schools actively involved in embedding IL activities within the curriculum during this phase. There is a real interest from schools in providing accredited IL training for learners through the Agored Cymru qualifications. However there are some issues with internal/external verification responsibilities and costs which are proving to be a challenge to schools accessing the qualifications. Building links with teacher training departments throughout Wales will also be a feature of the project for Phase IV.

Project officers have been facilitating public library IL champions in Monmouthshire and Merthyr Tydfil to complete the Level 3 Agored Cymru qualifications.

Welsh Information Literacy Project
‘Happy Faces’ Feedback. Image from Abergele Library IL Event

Library staff will be supported in these local authorities to complete Agored Cymru Level 2 in Phase IV. The project team have also been facilitating library staff in Gwynedd to complete the Agored qualification through the medium of Welsh. We will continue to support the roll out of the accredited units as the public library libraries involved explore further how to facilitate IL support with their users. Project officers also recent supported a schools IL activity day based in Abergele public library and are keen to facilitate further cross over events such as this. The project team are also currently organising an IL best practice sharing day in South Wales on the 1st August in Cardiff Central Library. The project team will be developing a draft sustainability plan and exit strategy over the coming months which will be presented to the Steering group in September 2013. Please contact wilp@gllm.ac.uk to book your place at the best practice sharing day or to get in touch if you would like to know more about the project. You can also contact us on twitter @welsh_info_lit.

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