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Information Literacy & Instruction

This LibGuide provides information about the Fintel Library Instruction program. If you have any questions related to the program or this guide, please email or call X2295.

Library Instruction Classes

Fintel Library's instruction program provides an introduction to information literacy skills in relation to research and information seeking. Librarians will guide the students towards knowledge of information resources, provide analytic and critical thinking skills and help instill the judgment they need to use them intelligently.

Faculty members teaching courses with a research component are strongly encouraged to request one or more library instruction sessions led by a subject liaison librarian or consider requesting a combination of library instruction and research appointments with their subject liaison librarian.

Faculty must be present when the class meets with the librarian. If you would like to schedule a library instruction session please fill out the INSTRUCTION REQUEST FORM. Please include a syllabus and the assignment that students will be working on.

Librarians use a scaffolded approach to library instruction and will work closely with faculty to design sessions that are targeted to assignments and outcomes.  Content areas for sessions are below.  Please take a moment to review and let us know what we can do for you.


INQ/HNRS 100’s (Intro to Research)

  • Difference between types of publications (magazines, journals, newspapers)
  • Explain that periodicals are accessed through library databases
  • Demonstrate how to search in the library catalog (advanced search, truncation devices, and Boolean operators) and is able to request materials from Hollins
  • Compares book, book chapter, and journal article citations
  • Discuss the importance of citing sources

If time allows:

  • Compare sources based on objective criteria: purpose, point of view, authority, accuracy, currency
  • Online searching: Uses Google Advanced Search


INQ 200’s and intro level for major courses

  • Distinguish between search limits in general databases
  • Discuss differences in primary and secondary research
  • Differentiate between general (novice databases) and subject specific databases.
  • Uses Google Scholar and Google Books and WorldCat to locate sources
  • Proficiency in understanding how to quote and paraphrase original text


INQ 300 and upper level major courses

  • Evaluate sources based on author’s claim, usefulness and relevance in relation to student’s own research claim
  • Search subject specific databases and retrieve specialized results
  • Determine which types of information sources are standard in their discipline (trade publications, monographs, data, etc.)
  • Choose prominent authors and publications in their field
  • Justifies when online searching is more appropriate for locating certain resources than using library (subscription) resources

If you are looking for a shorter session, or something more specific, please let us know if one of these sessions would be more accommodating:

  • The Fintel and Wyndham Robertson Collections (15 minutes)This session teaches students how to locate books, request items from Hollins, and use interlibrary loan.
  • Databases: What's the difference? (15 minutes). This session introduces students to the conceptual difference between our databases.
  • Database Searching: Basics (15-20 minutes) This session teaches students how to develop a basic search and limit their results.
  • Evaluating Sources: Basics (10-15 minutes) This session introduces students to basic evaluation criteria.
  • Website Evaluation (15 minutes) This session introduces students to evaluating information found outside of the Library's website.