Library Instructional Services

What is library instruction?

  • A partnership between classroom and library;
  • Formal instruction to your class by a librarian using a workshop format;
  • A classroom instructor and librarian working together to develop an information assignment or series of assignments.

What is the value of library instruction?

  • Creates an opportunity to integrate information with the course content so that information tasks are woven throughout the duration of the course;
  • Promotes life-long information literacy in each individual student;
  • Acquaints students in each discipline with the unique body of information within their field;
  • Provides thorough, point-of-use instruction for students as they begin an assignment;
  • Provides students with an active classroom experience in the library, emphasizing hands-on activities;
  • Creates ladder learning for students in which library instructional approaches are used in increasingly sophisticated ways as the student continues through the college curriculum, especially within a discipline.

Research and Information Competencies

The Faculty of Lycoming College endorses a research and information competency commitment across the curriculum that will enable Lycoming students to master the following skills: formulate and refine questions; acquire basic knowledge of where to begin the discovery process; know how, when and what kind of information defines effective research; synthesize, format, cite and reconcile diverse information; evaluate the quality and sustainability of information; and differentiate between types of sources and the relevance of each.

The goals of this curriculum-wide implementation of research and information competencies are to develop students who do the following:

  1. INQUIRE – Formulating and refining questions is a fundamental research skill. As a student's research advances, by adapting queries students can assess information more efficiently and effectively. Knowing how to frame inquiries is critical to pursuing information with the appropriate resources.
  2. NAVIGATE – Beyond the Internet and the World Wide Web, students should acquire some basic knowledge of where to begin the discovery process. Students should be able to employ a variety of information resources such as catalogs, indexes, and bibliographies in electronic and print formats.
  3. FIND – Knowing how and when to access information defines effective research. Often the inability to find data can be as frustrating as the overwhelming number of resources available.
  4. ORGANIZE – Appropriately synthesizing, formatting, citing and reconciling diverse information is logically an essential step in the research process. Students should be vigilant in avoiding plagiarism.
  5. REVIEW – Evaluating the quality and the suitability of information is what distinguishes legitimate research information competency. Students should be able to identify the place, context, and time in which the information was produced, the reliability and biases of the original source of the information, and whether the information has been reviewed by trustworthy referees.
  6. MAKE DISTINCTIONS – Students should be able to differentiate between primary, secondary and tertiary literature and know the relevance of each. Aware of various print and electronic formats of information, students should be able to see the difference between peer-reviewed and popular literature. Students should be able to identify trustworthy sources.


  • The Snowden librarians are eager to participate in the fight against intentional plagiarism on our campus as well as educating our students to avoid accidental plagiarism.
  • Please see the plagiarism tutorial the library has prepared.
  • We would also be happy to include this in a library instruction session or come to your classroom to discuss this issue with your students in person.
  • We also maintain the software, which can detect plagiarism. Please contact Mary Broussard if you have any questions regarding this product.

Click here for additional online tutorials.

For further information on library instruction or to arrange a class, please contact Emily Hardesty at x4087 or