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Skills at Library: Our information literacy framework

Welcome to Skills at Library, our information literacy support for Essex students and researchers!
Skills at Library Information literacy framework

Skills at Library home

Intro to the Library

Managing information

Search techniques

Unlocking information

Using sources


Sharing information

Support for researchers

About Skills at Library resources & training

Skills at Library is divided into 7 sections that will take you through the basics of using the Library and on to more advanced information literacy skills. We hope you will be able to use Skills at Library resources however works best for you. The below suggestions and framework have been provided to help guide your learning as you build on existing skills and identify knowledge gaps. To get the most out of Skills at Library training, we recommend completing the 'Information Masters' course on Moodle alongside our workshops.

Tips for undergraduates

We recommend completing each lesson in order (starting with '1. Intro to the Library'). This will help you develop foundational information skills for university study, and build more advanced competencies. It's never too early to complete this training. Ideally you should be working at advanced level information skills before starting any major assignments or your dissertation.

Tips for postgraduates

If you are a returning or post graduate student, you can quickly refresh your knowledge by referring to the 'Quick takeaways' sections of each lesson. Feel free to skip sections that you feel confident in and focus on the areas you need to develop. You should be confident in advanced level information literacy skills at the start of your course.

Skills at Library levels

Remember, the three levels of Skills at Library training should be used as a guide to help you build on existing skills. The levels will translate differently depending on your year of study and research needs. It's a good idea to revisit this training as you progress through your course to ensure your information skills are at the level they should be.

Skills at Library skill rating: beginner

Beginner information skills are expected to be developed by someone new to, or returning to university. Sections labelled as 'beginner' introduce Library resources and platforms that are necessary for study. These sections cover the basic skills required to use the Library and access course-related information.

Skills at Library skill rating: intermediate

Intermediate skills build directly on the concepts introduced at the beginner level. At this level, you should be able to make your own decisions about your information needs and how you will meet them.

2. Managing information

3. Advanced search techniques

4. Unlocking information

Skills at Library skill rating: advanced

Advanced skills involve interpreting information, data, and content to form your own ideas. At this level, you should be able to confidently reference reliable sources of information to support your arguments. These skills should be developed before the end of a final year undergraduate or taught postgraduate programme.

5. Using information

  • Understanding the ethics behind how you use information & academic integrity
  • Knowing how to avoid academic offenses
  • Checking source quality

6. Referencing

7. Sharing information inclusively

  • Inclusive information
  • Best practice for sharing information
  • Tips for developing your digital profile
  • How to start sharing or publishing your work

Information literacy framework

Skills at Library is based on the SCONUL 7 Pillars for Information Literacy model that defines information literate individuals as those who can:

  1. Identify and understand their personal needs for information.
  2. Scope out the type of information available to them and select the format and type that best fits their need.
  3. Plan their search and construct strategies for locating information and data.
  4. Gather and access the information and data they need.
  5. Evaluate and compare the quality and relevance of information and data.
  6. Manage and organise information professionally and ethically.
  7. Present the results of their research and communicating their knowledge it in a variety of ways.

We have adapted this framework to meet the needs of students and researchers at Essex.

Creative Commons Licence
Except where otherwise noted, this work by University of Essex Library and Cultural Services is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Licence.



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Created by: Clarissa St Yves & Oona Ylinen