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Emerging Information Literacy in a Community College ESL and Library Learning Community

Advances in Library Administration and Organization

ISBN: 978-1-78441-910-3, eISBN: 978-1-78441-909-7

Publication date: 16 June 2015


This qualitative case study explored the information literacy acquisition of 23 students enrolled in a learning community consisting of an advanced English as a Second Language (ESL) writing class and a one-unit class introducing students to research at a suburban community college library in California. As there are no other known learning communities that link an ESL course to a library course, this site afforded a unique opportunity to understand the ways in which ESL students learn to conduct library research. Students encountered difficulties finding, evaluating, and using information for their ESL assignments. Strategies that the students, their ESL instructor, and their instructional librarian crafted in response were enabled by the learning community structure. These strategies included integration of the two courses’ curricula, contextualized learning activities, and dialogue. ESL students in this study simultaneously discovered new language forms, new texts, new ideas, and new research practices, in large part because of the relationships that developed over time among the students, instructor, and instructional librarian. Given the increasing number of ESL students in higher education and the growing concern about their academic success, this study attempts to fill a gap in the research literature on ESL students’ information literacy acquisition.



Patterson, D.J. (2015), "Emerging Information Literacy in a Community College ESL and Library Learning Community", Advances in Library Administration and Organization (Advances in Library Administration and Organization, Vol. 33), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 135-172.



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