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ENG W509: Introduction to Writing and Literacy Studies

This guide was created in connection with a library instruction session in fall 2015. Please contact the librarian if you have questions.


Welcome to the English W509 course guide. This guide was created to help you navigate the library's resources and to provide information about information literacy. It will also provide you with resources to support your growing knowledge of Writing and Literacy Studies.

The guide is organized around the 5-step research process graphic below. You can navigate using the pages on the left (or at the top, if you're on a mobile device or small screen).

Please contact me, Bronwen, with questions or to request a consultation. I am YOUR librarian and I'm here to help throughout your graduate school experience. My contact information is in the box on the left.

The Research Process Infographic

Information Literacy

Why bring it up in W509? Maybe it's a bit meta of me, but I have found there's a lot of overlap between the work of the Writing Center and my own field. I think it will be of benefit to you, as researchers, to take a peek behind the curtain and learn about what it means to be information literate.

Information literacy [IL] is a set of abilities requiring individuals to "recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and use effectively the needed information" [American Library Association. Presidential Committee on Information Literacy. Final Report. (Chicago: American Library Association, 1989.)].

The Association for College & Research Libraries (ACRL) developed a list of IL Competency Standards that librarians have used for over 10 years to measure the impact of their instruction as well as provide indication of how information literate a user-of-information is. Over time librarians saw the need to move away from this rigid list of characteristics to a more flexible definition of information literacy. ACRL officially filed the Framework for IL in early 2015 among the organization's list of other guiding documents about IL. Though the Standards have not been retired, the move from the Standards to the Framework shows a shift from a checklist approach to a more holistic approach.

Library Website

This course guide pulls in resources from the library website, but it is not meant to replace the website. Please take time to familiarize yourself with the library site (link below), IUCAT (center search box), and the databases (scroll down & click the Databases icon). 

First things first, please go to the library home page by clicking on the link below. Click on 'Services' at the top of the page and look for "Borrowing." Click on "Interlibrary Loan." Everyone should register their ILL account. First time users will have to provide their name, address, etc.

InterLibrary Loan - Infographic