The Social Side of Research

Research into Practice
Instruction Coordinator
California State University, Maritime


In 2012, Project Information Literacy (PIL) investigated college graduates’ information seeking behavior once they enter the workplace. We asked: what expectations do employers have of today's college graduates for finding and using information? What challenges relating to information use and solving information problems do recent college graduates face in the workplace? One of the study’s major findings suggests information literacy in the workplace is fundamentally social. The most common shortfall identified by employers was the ability to integrate team members into the research process. While employers valued the computing competencies of new hires, they suggested recent college grads needed to break away from their computers to include people as sources, as well as confer with team members as part of an iterative information seeking and evaluating process. In focus group discussions, recent graduates mentioned the social aspect of workplace research as one of three top challenges in transitioning from college.


Of the 87 learning outcomes included in the ACRL Information Literacy Standards, 14 could be characterized as social. How can instruction librarians address these socially-oriented learning outcomes and better prepare students for the workplace?

The presenter, a research analyst with Project Information Literacy, will 1) summarize findings of PIL’s “Day after Graduation” study; 2) summarize results of an analysis of recent information literacy publications and online tutorials for coverage of socially-oriented learning outcomes; and 3) discuss opportunities for instruction librarians be leaders on their campus in addressing the social side of research.



Date and time: 
Sat, 04/05/2014 - 10:15am - 11:30am


Monterey [LL]