Information literacy is the ability to locate, evaluate, and use information effectively and ethically. It is an essential component in the educational development of each student–both for success in school as well as later in life.

The research process has become increasingly challenging, with access to more search technology resulting in an overload of information. The incredible range of resources all mean one thing: students need to be prepared to evaluate and make informed choices about the best sources for their research needs. Information literacy goes beyond the skills used to manipulate software programs and device apps; it involves making judgments about the validity and relevancy of information.

The information literate person is able to –

  • determine the extent of information needed
  • access the needed information effectively and efficiently
  • evaluate information and its sources critically
  • incorporate selected information into a knowledge base
  • use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose
  • access and use information ethically and legally

The Information Literacy Competency Test

The Information Literacy Competency test consists of two components. The first part is a library information session, which is usually completed during Rhetoric classes. The second part is completion of a short exam. Completion of the Information Literacy Competency is required for graduation. Both components are often completed in a single class session, but may be presented separately according to the instructor’s preference.

A passing grade for the exam is 70% or higher. Students who earn a grade of less than 70% must re-take the exam. Grades, passing or failing, are reported to the Registrar’s office. A passing grade is required for graduation.

If you have any questions please contact Michael Smith.

Head of Reference/Learning Commons
Michael Smith
413-265-2297
smithm@elms.edu