Informed Learning Applications: Insights from Research and Practice

ISBN: 978-1-78769-062-2, eISBN: 978-1-78769-061-5

ISSN: 0065-2830

Publication date: 26 August 2019


(2019), "Prelims", Ranger, K.L. (Ed.) Informed Learning Applications: Insights from Research and Practice (Advances in Librarianship, Vol. 46), Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. i-xvi.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019 Emerald Publishing Limited

Half Title


Series Page



  • Paul T. Jaeger, University of Maryland, Series Editor

  • Caitlin Hesser, University of Maryland, Series Managing Editor

Editorial Board:

  • Denise E. Agosto, Drexel University

  • Wade Bishop, University of Tennessee Knoxville

  • John Buschman, Seton Hall University

  • Michelle Caswell, University of California Los Angeles

  • Sandra Hughes-Hassell, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

  • R. David Lankes, University of South Carolina

  • Don Latham, Florida State University

  • Ricardo L. Punzalan, University of Maryland

  • Lynn Westbrook, University of Texas

Title Page




Kim L. Ranger

Grand Valley State University, USA

United Kingdom – North America – Japan India – Malaysia – China

Copyright Page

Emerald Publishing Limited

Howard House, Wagon Lane, Bingley BD16 1WA, UK

First edition 2019

Copyright © 2019 Emerald Publishing Limited

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British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data

A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library

ISBN: 978-1-78769-062-2 (Print)

ISBN: 978-1-78769-061-5 (Online)

ISBN: 978-1-78769-063-9 (Epub)

ISSN: 0065-2830 (Series)


Acknowledgments vii
Figures and Tables ix
About the Contributors xi
Christine Bruce xv
Kim L. Ranger 1
Chapter 1 The Six Frames in Schools: Practices from Taiwan
Lin Ching Chen and Yaw-Huei Chen 5
Chapter 2 Simultaneous Learning about Research and Filmmaking: Informed Learning and Research Guides
Shelley Woods and Kathleen Cummins 23
Chapter 3 Beyond Information Literacy: Rethinking Approaches to the College Public Speaking Curriculum
Danielle R. Leek and Carl J. Brown 37
Chapter 4 Ways of Learning of Information Professionals: Concepts, Roles, and Strategies
Virginia M. Tucker 51
Chapter 5 Relational Liaising to Integrate Informed Learning into the Disciplinary Classroom
Kim L. Ranger 67
Chapter 6 Academic Librarians as Informed Learning Developers
Rachel Fundator and Clarence Maybee 81
Chapter 7 Information Literacy (IL) “Without Borders”: The Future of IL Education
Veronica Cunningham 95
Chapter 8 Power and Resistance in Informed Learning
Lee Webster and Andrew Whitworth 115
Index 133


Thanks go to all of the following:

Grand Valley State University for sabbatical leave; University Libraries for their financial and collegial support; the Center for Scholarly and Creative Excellence for their Catalyst grant and the Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center for their Teaching Innovation grant; Mr Matt Ruen for his advice on the publishing contract.

Queensland University of Technology, School of Information Systems for providing workspace, equipment, and Wi-Fi; Information Science colleagues in Y7 for their gracious welcome, generosity, conversations, and sharing their knowledge and ideas; Dr Christine Bruce, formerly of Queensland University of Technology’s School of Information Systems, Information Science, for her constant encouragement and mentorship; Dr Ian Stoodley for his wise counsel on several drafts of my chapters and for many genial chats; Dr Elham Sayyad Abdi for her generous hospitality, advice, and allowing me to guest lecture in IFN 616; Dr Andrew Demasson for many amiable chats and sharing his knowledge of phenomenography, Aussie literature, and everything else; Dr Linh Nguyen for his kindness and allowing me to guest lecture in IFN 617; Dr Sharmistha Dey for her friendliness and allowing me to guest lecture in IFN 615; Ms Pamela Hoyte, PhD student, for loaning a fellow musician an instrument to play; Mr Syed Rehan Abbas Zaidi, PhD student, for our philosophical conversations.

Amy Ranger for her love, support, and advice – I could not have done this without her.

And all those whom I haven’t named: may your light continue to shine.

Figures and Tables


1.1 Framework for the Integrated Information Literacy Curriculum. 8
1.2 Maple Tree Identification Cards. 16
1.3 The Best Proposal Poster Titled “Fish Squad.” 17
1.4 The Class Aquarium. 18
3.1 Data Analysis Map: Public Speaking Materials. 40
5.1 Adapted from Bruce’s (2008) Definitions of Information, Learning, and Informed Learning. 68
5.2 Expression/Dissemination. 71
5.3 Cross-disciplinary Model of Building Informed Learning Content (Relational Liaising). 74
5.4 Assessment/Evaluation. 75
5.5 Previous and New Library Subject Guides Restructured to Reflect Disciplinary Concepts. 78
7.1 Common Ground Model of Conceptions of IL (Cunningham 2017). 101


1.1 Key Aspects of Inquiry Projects. 10
4.1 Threshold Concepts: Considerations Tied to Key Points for Course Design. 59
6.1. Key Aspects of the Work of Educational Developers. 85
6.2 Key Aspects of the Work of Informed Learning Developers. 87
7.1 Comparative Analysis of Conceptions of IL. 102
7.2 IL “Without Borders” Model: A Blended Strategic Approach to Advancing INFL/ILE. 109
8.1 Overview of Assessed Discussion Board Activities. 120

About the Contributors

Dr Carl J. Brown is an Assistant Professor of Communication Studies and the Executive Director of the Speech Lab at Grand Valley State University. He teaches sections of public speaking, communication theory, and communication research methods. As Speech Lab Director, he trains and mentors staff, directs various student research projects, and produces his own award winning communication center research. His other research interests include public speaking empowerment and the exploration of learning styles. He earned his PhD in Communication Studies while serving as the Coordinator of the Speaking Center at The University of Southern Mississippi. His dissertation, titled Instructor-Student Classroom Interactions: An Experimental Study of Language, Sex Differences, and Student Perceptions of Instructors, examined instructor use of slang in the classroom. Previously, he earned both his Master of Arts and Bachelors degrees from East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tennessee.

Dr Lin Ching Chen is a Professor in the Department of E-learning Design & Management at the National Chiayi University, Taiwan. She teaches courses and conducts research on information literacy, information technology, and information problem solving. She likes to work with teachers in various levels to investigate real problems in the fields, especially in integrating information literacy into different curricula. She earned her BA from National Taiwan University in Taiwan, and her MEd from the University of Arizona and her EdD in educational technology from the University of Florida. She has published in Malaysian Journal of Library & Information Science, Journal of Educational Media & Library Sciences, Knowledge Management E-Learning: An International Journal, etc.

Dr Yaw-Huei Chen is an Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Information Engineering at the National Chiayi University, Chiayi, Taiwan. His research interests are in the areas of machine learning, natural language processing, Bayesian data analysis, and databases. Recently he is involved in several digital reading projects. He received the BS degree in electrical engineering from the National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan, the MS degree in electrical and computer engineering from the University of Arizona, Tucson, and the PhD degree in computer and information sciences from the University of Florida, Gainesville. He has published in Maejo International Journal of Science and Technology, Malaysian Journal of Library & Information Science, The International Journal of Computational Linguistics, and Chinese Language Processing, etc.

Dr Kathleen Cummins is a Professor of Film, Television and Journalism at Sheridan College. She has a BA in Film Studies, an MFA in Film Production, and a PhD in Women’s and Gender Studies. She has written on a diverse range of topics related to cinema and filmmaking. As a filmmaker, she has received funding from the Ontario Arts Council, Telefilm-Canada, the Harold Greenberg Screenwriting Fund, the National Film Board of Canada, and the CBC, and her films have been screened and broadcast internationally. Kathleen is passionate about teaching, making, and writing about film.

Dr Veronica Cunningham, Library Development and Information Literacy Education Consultant, International Baccalaureate (IB) Theory of Knowledge Teacher, and Founder of Cunningham Education, Norway, provides creative information literacy education (ILE) solutions to international school communities and libraries. She has held senior positions in the library, curriculum development, assessment, and strategic planning areas, and has designed and implemented ILE initiatives relevant to the IB Diploma and Primary Years Programmes. In addition to her consultancy services she works as an IB Theory of Knowledge teacher and has previously worked as an Associate Lecturer in the social sciences and as peer-to-peer trainer regarding approaches to teaching critical analysis for the Open University. Understanding IL from multiple stakeholder groups perspectives formed the focus of her doctorate research the findings from which point to the need for a re-calibration of the ways we understand IL to proactively inform ILE in the twenty-first century.

Ms Rachel Fundator is an Information Literacy Instructional Designer at Purdue University’s Libraries and School of Information Studies. She works with subject faculty on pedagogical decisions and disciplinary uses of information to support student learning within a large-scale course redesign program. Her research interests include informed learning and active learning environments. She has published in The Journal of Academic Librarianship and Library & Information Science Research.

Dr Danielle R. Leek is Director of Academic Innovation & Distance Education at Bunker Hill Community College in Boston, Massachusetts. She is also an Instructor in the MA in the communication program at Johns Hopkins University. Prior to joining Campus Compact, Danielle was Associate Professor of Communications at Grand Valley State University where she also served as the Executive Director of the award-winning campus Communication Center. She holds a PhD in Communication from the University of Iowa. Her research focuses on civic agency, civic education, and political communication. She also holds an MBA from Grand Valley State University, an MA in Communication from the University of Iowa, and a BS in Speech Communication from Eastern Michigan University.

Dr Clarence Maybee is an Associate Professor at Purdue University’s Libraries and School of Information Studies. His research on information literacy in theoretical and applied contexts is published in highly ranked information science and higher education journals. He is one of the leaders of a national program hosted by the Association of College and Research Libraries to develop librarians’ teaching expertise. He is the Series Editor of the information literacy handbook series published by Purdue University Press. In 2018, he authored the book, IMPACT Learning: Librarians at the Forefront of Change in Higher Education, published by Chandos Publishing.

Ms Kim L. Ranger has been a Faculty Librarian at Grand Valley State University since 1990. She holds a Master of Information and Library Studies from the University of Michigan and a BA in Anthropology/Sociology from Western Michigan University. Formerly a Government Documents and Reference librarian, then Information Literacy Coordinator, she spent both her 1999 and 2017 sabbaticals studying information literacy at the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia. Since 2006, she has been Liaison Librarian to the School of Communications, Music, Theatre, and Dance, Photography, and Film and Video Production. In 2016, she produced a peer-reviewed, open access book titled Seventh-day Quaker: A Spiritual Memoir. She is passionate about teaching and learning, reading, the outdoors, music and the arts, LGBT advocacy, and issues affecting indigenous peoples. She is fascinated by languages, especially Spanish, quantum physics, and ethics in autonomous robots.

Dr Virginia Tucker is Assistant Professor at the School of Information at San José State University, where she teaches and coordinates curriculum for courses in information retrieval system design, advanced search, and information architecture, and serves as Associate Coordinator of the Gateway PhD Program. She was previously Product Architect and Client Training Manager at Dialog/Thomson (now ProQuest), the Physics Librarian at Stanford University, and a Public Law Librarian. Her current research interests include search behavior, information structures, online learning, and information experience. She has a PhD in information systems from Queensland University of Technology; MLS from University of California at Berkeley; and BA in music composition from Stanford University.

Dr Lee Webster is a Lecturer in Enterprise in the Alliance Manchester Business School at the University of Manchester, UK. He joined Manchester Enterprise Centre as an Enterprise Fellow in 2002 before taking up the post of Enterprise Academic in 2004. He holds a PhD in physical chemistry awarded by Salford University in 1996. Before joining MEC he worked as a research and development chemist. He has been actively involved in technology transfer and innovation from universities to both small companies and multinational corporations.

Dr Andrew Whitworth is Director of Teaching and Learning Strategy at the Manchester Institute of Education, University of Manchester, UK. He has published two single-authored books on Digital and Information Literacy: Information Obesity (2009) and Radical Information Literacy (2014). He was one of the authors of the 2012 Moscow Declaration on Media and Information Literacy and in 2017 was Keynote Speaker at the European Conference on Information Literacy.

Ms Shelley Woods is the Faculty of Animation, Arts and Design Liaison Librarian and User Education Coordinator at Sheridan College. Prior to working at Sheridan, she taught Early Childhood Education and English as a Second Language. Her career in libraries has spanned Brock, Harvard, McGill University and Boston Public Library. She holds a Master of Library and Information Studies, Graduate Certificate of Inclusive Education and Bachelor of Elementary Education from McGill University, and Museum Studies Graduate Certificate from Harvard University. When she is not helping students, she enjoys collaborating with faculty on interesting projects.


The core idea underpinning informed learning is very simple. It is about peoples’ experiences of using information to learn, and how, as educators, we might usher learners into as wide a range of those experiences as possible. Informed learning is about information literacy and information literacy education, considered from the phenomenographic position that learning is about coming to experience things in new and more powerful ways. Informed learning develops and explores the notion that using information to learn involves simultaneous attention to both information use and the content of learning in many contexts.

In this volume, Kim Ranger has brought together a wide range of applications of, and advances to, informed learning by colleagues around the world. The chapters represent learning at many levels, and in diverse cultures. Extensively described examples of curriculum, approaches to academic development, organizational strategies, new insights into people’s experiences, and theoretical developments are included. Kim’s own work, inspiring the idea of relational liaising is a special feature. Clearly, this is a volume that will serve as an inspiration well into the future.

As we continue to advance informed learning through organizational and developmental strategies, bringing informed learning into curriculum continues to be a cornerstone of our work. We need to continue to ask questions of curriculum, such as:

  • How can the relation between information use and content learning be strengthened?

  • Which information and learning experiences are represented (e.g., Seven faces) and how can a wider balance be achieved?

  • Which frames for informed learning have been adopted, and how can a wider balance be achieved?

  • Where can reflection on information use and learning be built into learning design?

  • How can emphasis on community and workplace contexts be built into the learning design?

  • How can relevant information user research inform the learning design?

As we journey in our informed learning work we need to keep in mind that being an informed learner is about being able to maximize the potential of the information environment available in any context. Being an informed learner enables not only productivity and capability, but also innovation and creativity. Informed learners are empowered to help others learn. When being informed, people are being energized, activated to become something new, and bring important changes to our world.

Information has the potential to be transformational. As future professionals and leaders, informed learners will be empowered to work to solve problems of poverty, hunger, homelessness, drug addiction, and injustice as well as to help people live and enjoy their lives. Their awareness of information and learning experiences will help them to have influence across social and cultural contexts, digital and physical information environments, as well as commercial and political spaces.

As we make informed learning possible, we need to do so wisely and with a view to the futures that our day-to-day focus may bring about. The contents of this book contain many examples of how that work is already happening.


The questions for critiquing learning design and thoughts about informed learners toward the end of this preface are adapted from ideas developed during a visit to Hong Kong Polytechnic University Library in November 2016.

Christine Bruce

Dean, Graduate Research

James Cook University, Australia