Scientific Information Literacy Module

General Biology I Laboratory
Mar 2, 2012 by Ph.D. Vivian Navas Almeyda

This module was designed to develop information literacy skills and competency in freshman students as they learn of contemporary scientific issues. The faculty was concerned with students’ deficiencies in finding, using and evaluating electronic and library resources to search for scientific information. The objective of this laboratory module is to early-on introduce information literacy skills to contribute to student success in college and to lifelong learning. The module has been integrated into a laboratory exercise in the General Biology laboratory (BIOL 3051).

Module Description:

1. Students are assigned the following two on-line presentations (*) on how to distinguish primary from secondary literature, how to search for reliable scientific information in the web, and how to efficiently search databases at the UPRM library website:

A. Búsqueda de Información Científica

B. Búsqueda de Información Científica en Google

2. The students must then search the web and in the library databases for two references for their lab experiment. They will include these references in the scientific article they will write at end of semester.

3. The students must then complete an assignment which they return to their lab instructor for grading. In this assignment they evaluate their references based on what they learned in the presentations.

*These online presentations were designed by Jaquelina Alvarez and Arelys Fernández (from the General Library) for the Information Literacy Module of the General Biology Lab in collaboration with Dr. Vivian Navas from the Department of Biology, University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez Campus.

The 2 presentations "Búsqueda de Información Cientifica en Google" and " Búsqueda de Información Cientifica" are available at the library homepage under Ayuda section, "Guias y Manuales" > "Otros" Section.

This initiative was funded through the Research Oriented Laboratory Enhancements by Module Development for Laboratories (ROLE-MODEL) proposal (2008-2012) of the Undergraduate Science Education Program of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

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