Information Fluency: It’s Elementary! (Beta Testers Needed)

Carl Heine is developing a series of online learning games to teach elementary students the essentials of search. We’re looking for feedback and suggestions as we begin the development cycle.

We have an Information Fluency group on Joyce Valenza’s Teacher Librarian Ning where we are asking for feedback on our new elementary age games.

Please join the Ning and our group so you can participate in our beta test?

The Essential Role of Information Fluency in E-Learning

I’ve been researching and writing about Information Fluency since the turn of the century. My work is published on the 21st Century Information Fluency Portal: You’ll find modular online learning content including games, micromodules and assessments on the portal. (Free for all educators.)

I include information fluency training in all of my online classes. I introduce power searching and website investigation to the graduate students studying in the E-Learning and Online Teaching Certificate Program at UW-Stout ( ) because I believe that Information Fluency is a foundation skill for all online teachers and learners.

dif model

What continually surprises me is that most educators (including those with advanced degrees) lack formal training in this field. Unless I’m working with a Library Media Specialist, most have little experience in searching, evaluating, and ethical use of digital materials.

Curiously, most educators think they are competent searchers and evaluators, when they are really just beginners. Their disposition is to ask for help rather than search for answers. With simple instruction many radically improve their ability to search, and evaluate. This is empowering and greatly increases learner satisfaction. Instruction in copyright and fair use is also part of the program.

At the same time I push the idea that it is everyone’s duty to teach website evaluation and ethical use as part of any online curriculum. Too often educators assume someone else should have done the job by the time their students walk through the door. The application of information fluency to all curriculum areas is profound. Students given even rudimentary instruction in Information Fluency immediately benefit.

As online teachers and learners we work in a computer where information is just a few keystrokes away. I hope we can promote the disposition in all online teachers and learners that skilled use of Internet resources is the essential learning skill of our times.

Dennis O’Connor
Program Advisor
E-Learning & Online Teaching
School of Education
Online Professional Development
University of Wisconsin-Stout
Wisconsin’s Polytechnic University
530-318-1145 (Cell)
Skype: wiredinstructor2

Information Fluency at NECC 2008

21st century information fluency

Necc 2008

Join Carl Heine and Dennis O’Connor in San Antonio for NECC 2008.

Monday June 30, 2008

Web Site Investigator: An Introduction to Information Forensics Add to Planner

[Session: Lecture]

Carl Heine, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy with Dennis O’Connor

Monday, 6/30/2008, 11:00am–12:00pm; HGCC 206 A

blog tags: necc, n08s402

Motivate students to evaluate Web sites with information forensics. Track down elusive authors, dates, check the accuracy of claims, and more using investigative search techniques.  Recommended by ISTE’s SIGMS
Necc 2008 Necc 2008

Tuesday July 1, 2008

Teaching NETS•S III: 21st-Century Information Fluency Project Add to Planner

[Poster: Traditional]

Carl Heine, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy with Dennis O’Connor

Tuesday, 7/1/2008, 1:00pm–3:00pm; HGCC Tower View Lobby, Table: 26

blog tags: necc, n08s781

Discover new resources for teaching information fluency to your staff and students.  Recommended by ISTE’s SIGMS, SIGCT
Necc 2008

21st century information fluency

Look for new online classes coming from Information Fluency this summer!

  • 4 Week Online Course: PowerSearching in a Web 2.0 World (Starts July 7)
  • 1 Week Online Course: Website Investigator: Introduction to Information Forensics (Starts July 14)
  • You may view the course offerings in ‘guest mode’. To register online, first create an account.
  • Online Registration Information

Power Searching in a Web 2.0 World: 4 Week Online Course

New Section Forming! April 28 – May 22.
Power Searching in a Web 2.0 World: 4 Week Online Course.

Searching, evaluating, and ethically using digital information. Activities include self-paced learning modules, online flash based games, and forum discussions.

To Register Online: Click Here (This Moodle based course begins April 28, 2008)

For information write ~ 21CIF Team