Deconstruction of an engineering syllabus for information literacy

Barbara Williams, Paul Blowers

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Information literacy skill sets provide the foundation for lifelong learning, and the desire to produce engineers with these skills has necessitated the collaboration between librarians and faculty to meaningfully integrate information literacy instruction into the engineering undergraduate curriculum. Two specific criteria of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) such as the ability to formulate problems, and knowledge of contemporary issues, rely on a student's ability to locate and synthesize information in its various formats. Developing information literacy skills will allow students to exert more control over the structuring of their own learning within and beyond the classroom. This discourse begins by examining some of the tangible and marketable benefits of information literate engineering students. This is followed by an examination of a successful collaboration between an engineering faculty and a librarian in the instruction of undergraduate and graduate students in becoming more information savvy. More often than not, students begin their research process by "surfing the net" yet the Internet appears to skew a student's ability to discern between refereed and non-refereed materials. As faculty we have all found it disheartening to have students submit technical reports in which most of the citations are to web pages. To highlight the need for incorporating information literacy into the engineering curriculum, we deconstruct an engineering syllabus and identify areas in several course assignments where information literacy can be interjected in a nonintrusive but highly beneficial way. We identify the components of information literacy that support and provide transferable skills to ensure that students are successful in future information seeking endeavors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3565-3573
Number of pages9
JournalASEE Annual Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - 2003
Event2003 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: Staying in Tune with Engineering Education - Nashville, TN, United States
Duration: Jun 22 2003Jun 25 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Deconstruction of an engineering syllabus for information literacy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this