Proposal and Background for the Establishment of Minimum Level of Information Competence for HSU students

Submitted (12/18/95) by the Computer Competency Committee: Jack Stoob, convener; Phil Rose, CPS; Margaret Lang, CNRS; Tim McMillan, BSS; Ken Hannaford, A&H; Bob Sathrum, Library; Frieda Ravasco, AS; Bill Cannon, C&TS; Lily Owyang and invited members, Jack Turner, Colleen Mullery, and Corryn Crosby-Muilenberg.

Proposal:

  1. Goal. To establish a minimum level of information competence for HSU students: for native students, the attainment of the minimum level of information competence must be demonstrated by the completion of thirty semester units and for transfer students, by the completion of fifteen semester units.

  2. Every HSU student must demonstrate successful mastery in the competencies listed below at the completion of 30 or 15 semester units:
    1. describe basic computer terminology.
    2. utilize disk and file management commands and GUI.
    3. respond to appropriate and reasonable questions about computer ethics related to issues of copyright, viruses, resource use, etc.
    4. demonstrate basic skills in wordprocessing, spreadsheet, and telecommunications (e-mail, WWW access)

  3. Students may satisfy the minumum level of information competence by:
    1. completing a written and performance exam OR
    2. completing a course(s).
In the event the proposed Learning Assistance Center becomes a reality, it might serve as a site where students may seek appropriate assistance toward meeting the minumum level of information competence with appropriate computer-assisted instructional software, and tutorials.

Background:

Documentation from:

  1. The "Phil Rose Committee" Report (May 9, 1994).
  2. UCC minutes on computer competency.

    History:

    1. Sept 20, 1994: Established subcommittee to explore the Phil Rose Committee proposal on computer competency. (Subcommittee formed to review the resolution (Senate's?); UCC informed Senate of action.)
    2. October 18, 1994: UCC subcommittee suggests sending Provost a memo requesting assistance in eliciting broader support for computer competency.
    3. January 24, 1995: Formation of a university-wide group on computer competency noted; Provost asks UCC for assistance in establishing membership of a committee to examine the matter.
    4. February 14, 1995: Information item: Provost has written to Deans regarding UCC recommendation on composition of a computer competency committee.
    5. May 18, 1995: Note that Tom Butte is chairing a committee on a student technology fee. UCC should invite the new CATS director to a meeting.

  3. Senate minutes on computer competency.

    History:

    1. December 6, 1994: Recommend broadly representative, university wide study group be formed to determine desirable level of computer competency and how competency is to be assessed.

  4. Senate minutes on distance learning.

    History:

    1. Discussed on November 7, 1995. Result not official until minutes approved.

  5. The "Charles Chamberlin Committee" Report (May 11, 1994).

    Some Findings:

    1. Found one microcomputer on the campus per fifteen FTES; one per sixteen students head count.
    2. From "Warlick" 1992 data: 75% of universities like HSU have better ratios; half have better than 1 to 11.
    3. Microcomputer labs at HSU are heavily scheduled.
    4. Report recommendations deal with organization and funding of CATS.
    5. Theme throughout the reports is an expectation of significant increase in use of computing technology.

  6. UCC Report on Distance Learning (February 7, 1995).

    History:

    1. September 6, 1994 UCC minutes: UCC subcommittee on distance learning is formed.
    2. October 4, 1994 UCC minutes: Status report from the UCC subcommittee.

    Some Points:

    1. Distance Learning definition: "... interactive educational activities that link teachers, students and / or their educational resources, when any one of these three is separated from any other by space and / or time."
    2. Cites computer networks as one mode of delivery; cites computing and telecommunications software as another mode; cites kiosk, CD-ROM and other stand-alone instructional packages as still another mode of delivery.
    3. Proposes that distance learning courses and programs be monitored closely and that the UCC be designated as oversight body foe educational quality.

  7. Job Description for the Coordinator of Distance Learning Initiatives

    Some Points:

    1. Responsible for the development of courses appropriate for distance learning delivery.
    2. Note that there is no reference to UCC responsibilities.

  8. Provost documents on computer competency.

    A search revealed none beyond those already mentioned in this list.

  9. Provost documents on distance learning.

    A search revealed none beyond those already mentioned in this list.

  10. SLC resolutions / minutes on computer competency.

    A search revealed none worthy of note.

  11. SLC resolutions / minutes on distance learning.

    A search revealed none worthy of note.

  12. NR&SCI College Report on Computer Competency.

    History:

    1. March 17, 1994 NR&SCI Council of Chairs endorsed a Revised Report of the Curriculum Committee Subcommittee on Computer Competency Courses, with one amendment (Vote: 5-4-4)

    Summary:

    1. Report proposed a hierarchy of levels:

      1. Five week introductory modules on MSDOS/Windows or Macintosh systems

        or

        an examination. Modules would be taught by the CIS Department.

      2. Five week modules to include word processing, spreadsheets, database, communications/email/internet

        or

        an examination. Modules would be taught by the CIS Department.

      3. Advanced courses in word processing, spreadsheet, database, graphics, procedural programming languages, communications, and other. One to three unit courses taught by the CIS Department.

      4. Discipline specific courses offered by disciplines themselves.

    2. Report proposed that courses in the college would cite competencies required as

      "Proficiency in [    ] is required (see page xx in the catalog).

      [MSDOS/Windows]
      [Macintosh Operating Systems]
      [Word Processing]
      [Spreadsheets]
      [Databases]
      [Communications/EMAIL/Internet]

    3. Report proposed the creation of an oversight committee for competency levels 1) and 2) cited above.

  13. Any BSS College documents on computer competency.

    A query to the dean of the college revealed that there are no documents dealing with the topic. The college has not discussed the topic in any formal manner.

  14. Any A&H College documents on computer competency.

    A query to the dean of the college revealed that there are no documents dealing with the topic found to date.

  15. Any PS College documents on computer competency.

    A query to the dean of the college revealed that there are no documents dealing with the topic.

  16. Any Library documents on information competency.

    List and Summaries:

    1. American Library Association Presidential Committee on Information Literacy, Final Report, 1989:
      • Individuals and the nation must be information literate.
      • To be literate one must be able to recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and effectively use the needed information.

    2. ASU West Library Information Literacy Competencies for Students / June 1993:
      • Literacy is the ability to access information, evaluate information, synthesize information.

    3. Cornell University Information Literacy Program Goals:
      • To understand role and power of information in a democratic society.
      • To understand the variety of the content and the forms of information.
      • To understand the standard systems for the organization of information.
      • To develop the capability to retrieve information.
      • To develop the capability to organize and manipulate information.

    4. ALA and You, January 1993:
      • Information literacy is the ability to locate, process, and use information effectively.

    5. HSU Information Services Department Vision for Library Instruction, May 1994:
      • Cites instruction in the use of library resources.
      • Instruction is to convey the nature of information itself, and the various ways it is created, disseminated, stored, retrieved, and evaluated.

    6. Information Technology and Libraries, June 1994:
      • Information literacy is the ability to locate, process, and use information effectively.
      • Diagram citing various competencies:

        [diagram here]

    7. San Jose State University Library Proposal "Information Literacy Initiative, Part I: Problem Analysis and Statement of Response", dated September 30, 1994:
      • Defines information literacy as the confluence of traditional, network, computer, and media literacy (see diagram cited in 7. above).

  17. Learning Assistance Center Proposal being planned

  18. CSU Workshop on Information Competence, Novebmer 16-17, 1995 attended by Jack Turner, Colleen Mullery, and Corryn Crosby-Muilenberg.

    Background and Context Paper (Some Points):

    1. Cites need to locate needed information, evaluate information quality, understand, interpret, synthesize, and use information in an ethical way.
    2. Information competence has a taproot in the "library orientation".
    3. Defines information literacy as the ability to locate, process, and use information effectively.

    Paper titled Information Literacy by Dan Jones (Some Points):

    1. The learning process would actively involve students in the process of knowing when they have a need for information, identifying information needed to address a given problem or issue, finding needed information, evaluating the information, organizing, and using the needed information effectively to address the problem or issue at hand.
    2. Higher education is being called on to define and develop a new learning style that fosters within students the abilities needed to be information-literate. Technology offers a basis for the new learning style (theme of the piece).

  19. Miscelleanous:

    1. Email from Cornell / query on the competency requirement.
    2. HSU Academic Senate Report on assured student access to computers, March 14, 1995.
    3. Untitled, undated document from "The Faculty of the College of Natural and Mathematical Sciences" citing abilities that students should have to "become active learners competent in the basic principles of their disciplines".
      • Lists abilities including use of scientific methods, critical thinking, problem solving, creative thinking, working collaboratively, effective communication, and display of ethical principles.
    4. November 11, 1995 office memo citing Shirley Behmens' "A Conceptual Analysis and Historical Overview of Information Literacy" of July 1994.
      • Defines information literacy as ability to recognize information need, ability to locate needed information, ability to apply information resources to work, ability to interpret information, having skills for utilizing information tools and sources, ability to make more intelligent decisions for a democratic society, and being informed and articulate about public policy issues.
      • Document cites skills and attitudes associated with information literacy.