Better Research Papers: Workshop Your Handout - Faculty Workshop

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Tuesday, August 26th, 2014, led by Margot Hanson and Michele Van Hoeck BETTER RESEARCH PAPERS: WORKSHOP YOUR HANDOUT 2:00-3:30 PM, LIBRARY GREEN ROOM Would you like to see higher quality research papers from students? Are you discouraged by grading papers with weak sources or insufficient citation? Drawing on recommendations from studies of student research habits, as well as librarian experience working with Cal Maritime students, attendees will work with a partner to revise one of their own research assignment handouts (prompts). NOTE: Please bring a paper copy of one of your research paper assignments to the workshop.

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  • 1. Better Research Papers: Workshop Your Handout Margot Hanson and Michele Van Hoeck Tuesday, August 26th 2014 2:00-3:30 PM, Library Green Room
  • 2. Todays Agenda 2:00 2:20 2:40 3:05 3:15 Welcome Project Information Literacy research findings Small Group Activity Evaluation of sample handout Individual Activity and Group Discussion Evaluate and redesign your own handout Resources Help for Research Guidance and Support Closing and Evaluation
  • 3. When you review research assignments, what do you see students struggling with most? https://todaysmeet.com/BetterResearchPapers
  • 4. "Truth Be Told: How College Students Evaluate and Use Information in the Digital Age," Alison J. Head and Michael B. Eisenberg, Project Information Literacy Progress Report, November 1, 2010.
  • 5. MAJOR FINDINGS
  • 6. 83% of handouts in our sample called for the standard research paper. Few handouts asked students to present findings using other formats, including multimedia and oral presentations. "Assigning Inquiry: How Handouts for Research Assignments Guide Today's College Students," Alison J. Head and Michael B. Eisenberg, Project Information Literacy Progress Report, July 13, 2010
  • 7. Six in 10 handouts recommended students consult the library shelvesa place-based sourcemore than scholarly research databases, the library catalog, the Web, orany other resource. "Assigning Inquiry: How Handouts for Research Assignments Guide Today's College Students," Alison J. Head and Michael B. Eisenberg, Project Information Literacy Progress Report, July 13, 2010
  • 8. Few of the handouts (14%) that directed students to use the librarys online scholarly research databasesspecified which database to usefrom the hundreds that tend to be available. "Assigning Inquiry: How Handouts for Research Assignments Guide Today's College Students," Alison J. Head and Michael B. Eisenberg, Project Information Literacy Progress Report, July 13, 2010
  • 9. Details about plagiarism, if mentioned at all, were scant and tended to emphasize the disciplinary recourse instructors would take against students who were caught in acts of academic dishonesty. "Assigning Inquiry: How Handouts for Research Assignments Guide Today's College Students," Alison J. Head and Michael B. Eisenberg, Project Information Literacy Progress Report, July 13, 2010
  • 10. Few of the handouts provided information for contacting instructors when students had questions about a research assignment, whether by email, face-to-face, the telephone, or in online forums. "Assigning Inquiry: How Handouts for Research Assignments Guide Today's College Students," Alison J. Head and Michael B. Eisenberg, Project Information Literacy Progress Report, July 13, 2010
  • 11. RECOMMENDATIONS
  • 12. Add Situational Context Why are students being asked to engage in a pedagogical research exercise in a certain course in the first place? Peel back the layers of the knowledge production process and what it means in the academic environment, in a given discipline, in a given class.
  • 13. Add Information-Gathering Context Research assignments, in general, should have students learn how to derive information from multiple and diverse formats.
  • 14. Ask for Help Contact a librarian and/or CETL for help, ideas, and inspiration.
  • 15. Adapted from Maricopa Community College District Libraries HOT TIPS
  • 16. Verify and sample resources available at the library
  • 17. Model with a sample paper http://rwc.hunter.cuny.edu/reading-writing/on-line/mla-sample-research-paper.gif
  • 18. Experiment with short, less overwhelming essays or projects
  • 19. Scaffold by providing steps & support structure for students Flickr user Ron Cogswell
  • 20. Teach students to select quality information & Evaluate sources appropriate to their topics Open Clipart
  • 21. Offer a reasonable time frame & mini deadlines for the assignment
  • 22. Be clear with the citation style & format. Offer examples!
  • 23. Encourage students to ask for help
  • 24. Invite a librarian to class!
  • 25. 76% of students surveyed considered written guidelines about course-related assignments to be one of the most helpful materials an instructor can provide. "Assigning Inquiry: How Handouts for Research Assignments Guide Today's College Students," Alison J. Head and Michael B. Eisenberg, Project Information Literacy Progress Report, July 13, 2010
  • 26. EVALUATION TIME!