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Information Literacy and Critical Thinking

Evans Library

The Evans Library's Information Literacy Program

No matter what discipline you are teaching chances are there's an opportunity for your students to critically question the information they've found, to interpret its use and to produce high-quality, original material. Want to know more? Interested in infusing even more information literacy requirements and critical thinking skills in your courses? Contact a Librarian, we'd love to help.

The Evans Library offers a wide-range of Information Literacy services to support course syllabi. As defined by the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL), Information Literacy seeks to develop students that know and demonstrate:

and who are able to:

  • Determine the extent of information needed

  • Access the needed information effectively and efficiently

  • Evaluate information and its sources critically

  • Incorporate selected information into one’s knowledge base

  • Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose

  • Understand the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information, and access and use information ethically and legally

Information Literacy standards are also widely recognized by SUNY and accreditation agencies such as Middle States. Developing a usable set of information literacy skills allows students to accurately navigate their world; a world that demands the accessing, evaluating and using of information from an ever-increasing number of places.

Information Literacy Sessions

Library and Learning Commons Orientation/Tour:

Designed for first-semester College students who may be experiencing and using an academic library for the first time,  these session include a general overview of the Evans Library and Learning Commons’ physical space, a highlighting of services available, as well as a quick “walk through” of the Library and Learning Commons’ website.  These are an ideal session for ENG040, or any other introductory course.

General Information Literacy Session:

These active learning sessions introduce students to the concept of searching for information – and stress how their everyday activities relate to finding and using information in an academic setting.  Grounded in an introduction to all the resources available to students through the Evans Library, students use the Evans Library catalog, set-up an Inter-Library account to request books from other Libraries, and “guide” a search using an online database. Capping this is a focus on the “how” of evaluating of sources – whether they are print or electronic. These sessions are generally offered for all ENG103 classes but are available to, and encouraged for, all other disciplines.

Subject Specific Working Research Session:

No matter the discipline or assignment, Librarians will work with you to develop a comprehensive approach your students can use to more successfully complete their work.  Possible skills that can be incorporated are:

  • Developing keywords and topics

  • Finding and Using scholarly journals

  • Search strategies and online databases

  • Website Evaluation

Using an active learning approach, students will engage the Library’s physical and online resources to become more comfortable conducting college-level, lifelong, research.

Embedded Information Literacy

Available for online, blended or courses using any learning management system (BlackBoard), Librarians work one-on-one with instructors to develop and implement content specifically designed to meet the course’s learning outcomes.  

EDR110 (Research for Success):

The Library’s 1-credit Information Literacy class is generally offered at least once a semester. Lead by a librarian, “...the skills introduced and developed in this course serve as a bridge to any college-level research assignment or life-long information literacy skills.” This course is offered in both the traditional and web-based formats.  Please see the FM College Catalog for a more complete course description.


All of the sessions are held in L-207, the Library’s Information Literacy classroom. To schedule a session or to learn more about incorporating information literacy standards into your curriculum contact: or call x8058

Part of the Evans Library’s mission is to assist in the development of information literate (information fluent) students. The Evans Library understands the need for students to leave FM "information literate,” in order to successfully access and evaluate information for their research, it is vital that librarians and instructional faculty work in tandem to re-enforce key concepts and skills.  Therefore, Instructional Faculty must attend and participate in the library sessions. This reinforces the message to students that information skills are important and valued.