Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

Information and Research Literacies

Student Benefits

Information literate people are able to access authoritative information about their health, their environment, their education, their work and their communities, empowering them to make critical decisions about their lives. They can have greater impact on their communities and help solve real world problems.

Learning Outcomes

Information and Research Literacies

Demonstrate capability as inquirers to locate, evaluate, manage, and use information and research to develop and guide their own knowledge, learning, and practice.

Skills Knowledge Application
Demonstrate the skills required to locate, access and critically evaluate existing information and data Demonstrate that disciplinary knowledge is developed through research and evidence Synthesize and apply information and data to different contexts to facilitate planning, problem solving and decision making


A graduated or tiered approach to the implementation of the information and research literacies GLO is recommended. The GLO elements need to be made explicit in several core subjects throughout the course. They may also be implicit in many other subjects in the course.

The recommended development of information literacy skills is below:

  • Students transitioning to academic study typically need assistance understanding the difference between scholarly and non-scholarly materials, learning what library resources are available for them, and evaluating the information sources they've found.
  • Students should now feel comfortable using Primo Search to locate subject readings and to find their own material beyond the recommended reading list. They will benefit from learning advanced search techniques and about searching in journal databases or discipline specific sources. Learning how to use EndNote will assist with managing reading material and more efficient referencing.
  • Students should be using a wide range of resources, and understand the key discipline specific sources in their field. They will benefit from learning the difference between primary, secondary and tertiary information sources, the information cycle, and how the process of information creation underpins their ethical use of information as consumers, workers and lifelong learners.

Course Requirements

Explicit acknowledgement of the knowledge, skill and application of the information and research literacies GLO in the learning outcomes, assessment tasks and rubrics of at least 3 assessments in core subjects in a course. This should be supplemented by learning activities to ensure students acquire these skills – the Library is also able to provide support and suggestions for this.

Teaching Practices

  • Specify acceptable and unacceptable sources
    Tell students what kind of sources they are expected to use, and help them make distinctions where ambiguities occur. Model the use of up to date and appropriate resources in your teaching.
  • Grade the research, not just the paper
    Make clear to students that you will pay close attention to the sources that they choose, and that their grade for the assignment will depend partly on the quality of their reference list. Assign tutorials to help your students through the process.
  • Encourage critical independent thought
    Assignments and learning activities that emphasise comparing, contrasting, and evaluating ideas are more likely to spur independent thought in students.
  • Break longer assessments into stepsFor research papers or presentations, have students first submit an outline with their research question, short outline of what will be covered, and an annotated bibliography. This helps students by giving feedback on their topic selection and preliminary research, and gives the instructor a chance to assist those students who may be struggling.


Information and Research Literacies can be discretely with focused criteria, and can be also be explicitly assessed using the following examples.

  • Complete a staged essay with an annotated bibliography, peer-reviewed essay draft, final essay, and reflection.
  • Retrieve and compare at least two sources of information on the same topic.
  • Critically review a research paper with consideration of its impact.
  • Start with a newspaper article and locate the original research and evaluate accuracy.
  • Write a proposal for an extended research project including preparation of a literature review.


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