Partners in Information Literacy: The Research Mentor Program at UNH Manchester
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The Research Mentor Program is a partnership between the UNH Manchester Library and the College’s Center for Academic Enrichment whereby student peer tutors receive training in both practical writing and research strategies along with theoretical applications for peer-assisted learning. Research Mentors are able to holistically support the research process from brainstorming topics; developing effective search strategies; and evaluating sources to preparing outlines; developing thesis statements; and drafting through the writing/revision cycle. The Research Mentor Program originated in 2004 and evolved during the past decade in response to classroom assessment and program evaluation findings.
In the current adaptation, the research mentor training curriculum aligns with the ACRL Frameworks for Information Literacy. Mentors engage with each of the Frames through class discussions, hands-on activities, role-playing exercises, and reflective writing entries. In one-to-one tutorials, research mentors are able to apply the Frames’ dispositions thereby guiding students to engage more effectively with scholarly inquiry, contextualizing authority, and acknowledging value in the research process. In this way, Research Mentors contribute to the effectiveness of information literacy instruction by recognizing gaps in students’ evidence, modelling the dispositions of the information literacy Frames in their interactions with students, and connecting students to the librarians for further research instruction.
UNH Manchester’s Research Mentor Program impacts library instruction by extending the influence of information literacy principles beyond the librarian’s classroom instructional sessions into the research mentor led tutorials and circling back to the library for individually focused instruction. Our Creating Knowledge VIII conference presentation is available at http://libraryguides.unh.edu/partnersinfolit. This presentation is based on our forthcoming chapter in Peer-assisted Learning in Academic Libraries, edited by E. Rinto, J. Watts, & R. Mitola published through Libraries Unlimited, Santa Barbara, CA (anticipated publication date early 2017).
Donahue, A., Donovan, K., & Gamtso, C. (2016). Partners in Information Literacy: The Research Mentor Program at UNH Manchester. Retrieved from http://libraryguides.unh.edu/partnersinfolit