MacEwan Librarians help prepare your students for academic research and advance the Library’s mission of fostering critical thinkers capable of navigating our information rich world with confidence. 

  • Students are introduced to foundational information and research skills through the Library's instructional program embedded in first year English courses. Learn more about the Library's English Instruction Program
  • Subject librarians develop discipline-specific research and information literacy (IL) instruction aimed at developing student knowledge, attitudes, and competencies required for academic success. Connect with your librarian through our Subject Librarian Directory

Library Instruction

Library instruction outcomes are tailored by Subject Librarians to meet student’s information needs, and to align with course and program learning outcomes. Library instruction outcomes are built on the conceptual Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education published by the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL).

Subject Librarians work with faculty, who often already incorporate elements of research and information instruction into their courses, in two main ways;

  • Helping to inform the information requirements for assignments and how information requirements are incorporated into the assignment process.
  • Supporting students with instruction, resources and activities to developing their ability to conduct research and use information for their course assignments.

“Our goal is to help students bridge the gap between what they know and what they need to know for your course.” (credit:

Customized Lessons, Tutorials and Learning Objects

Your Subject Librarian can provide:

  • How to videos
  • Online guides and infographics
  • Short synchronous online lessons and research sessions
  • Research assignment design and evaluation

Note that at this time, in-person sessions are offered at the discretion of the Subject Librarian and will follow covid-19 procedures, including masking.

Contact your Subject Librarian to discuss creating customized lessons designed to help students gain information literacy, critical thinking and research skills.

Below are the core learning outcomes that inform library instruction at MacEwan University:

  • Authority & Evaluation of Information: Differentiate between different kinds of authority and choose the appropriate authority for the context.
  • Information Creation: Demonstrate that information creation, by both oneself and others, is a dynamic process made up of a series of intentional decisions.
  • Power & Value of Information: Identify and examine the underlying power and value structures of information. Information Ethics: Exemplify ethical choices in the use of information.
  • Research Process: Conduct research as a dynamic process of asking questions, synthesizing information, and asking further questions.
  • Scholarship as a Conversation: Recognize that scholarship is a conversation, and judge where, when, and how to enter that conversation.
  • Information Searching: Seek information using an exploratory process, intentionally and continually revising search strategies.

Our Information Literacy Framework” by Red Deer Polytechnic Library is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 4.0.

Select examples of how the framework informs learning outcomes, competencies and performance indicators:

Learning OutcomeFoundational CompetencyDeveloping CompetencySample Assessment
Authority & EvaluationEvaluate a source, considering the author’s context, in order to identify and select appropriate sources (including peer-reviewed & scholarly sources as well as others)

Understand the purpose/role of peer-review

Understand authority as contextual

Aware of the impact of bias on information creation

Students have included sources appropriate to the topic by relevant authorities

Note: this may involve citing non-traditional authorities or including missing voices where appropriate

Power & Value of InformationAware of collection of private information and use in environments such as social media, search engine algorithms, ads and big data

Implementing personal information security practices

Understanding the basics of the information creation process and it’s costs

Knowing what open access resources are and how to access them

Students demonstrate an awareness of some of the barriers to information creation and access along with an ability to navigate around these to access relevant and appropriate information sources
Information EthicsDemonstrates a basic understanding of copyright and attribution by ethically using and creating information using citation techniques including, quoting and paraphrasingUnderstand copyright holder vs. creator rights. Is aware of and can use creative commons licenses

Student are appropriately citing and giving credit for information used

Students are using creative commons licensed works appropriately and seeking permission from creators where required

Additional Information