Presentation Title

Your School as Home Front: Using World War II Era Records from the University Archives to Enhance Information Literacy of First Year Students

Location

Room 1005

Type of Presentation

Individual paper/presentation (20 minute presentation)

Target Audience

Higher Education

Abstract

This presentation explores the use of archival resources to enhance the first year college students’ understanding of primary sources. In their introduction to Using Primary Sources: Hands on Instructional Exercises, Bahde, Smedberg and Taormina maintain that teaching with resources from special collections is an opportunity to create an active, integrated learning experience. Primary source literacy “reflects a multifaceted, interconnected, specialized set of both higher- and lower-order skills required of students working with primary sources” (Libraries Unlimited, 2014, p. xviii). After a brief review of the literature and learning objectives associated with primary source literacy, I will present, as example, a stand –alone workshop I have taught successfully. This learning activity uses archival resources typically available at school and university archives. The session was developed for first year history courses studying World War Two. Students discuss how the War impacted their school (and its students, faculty) based on hands-on exploration of documents and artifacts from the University’s archives. I will also share feedback from faculty collaborators about using the school’s special collections in these workshops. The information presented will provide a springboard for group discussion about teaching with archival materials, especially from the point of view of small or mid-sized college archival collections. With audience participation, we will explore ways this learning activity could be adapted for other disciplines, including composition classes and first year seminars encouraging engagement with the institution.

Presentation Description

Explore active learning strategies using documents and artifacts from the University archives to enhance primary source literacy of first year college students. Focus is on University/school archives with smaller collections and incorporating this learning activity into the first year courses.

Keywords

archives, primary sources, first year students, schools, universities, course integration, history

Publication Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

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Oct 11th, 9:45 AM Oct 11th, 11:00 AM

Your School as Home Front: Using World War II Era Records from the University Archives to Enhance Information Literacy of First Year Students

Room 1005

This presentation explores the use of archival resources to enhance the first year college students’ understanding of primary sources. In their introduction to Using Primary Sources: Hands on Instructional Exercises, Bahde, Smedberg and Taormina maintain that teaching with resources from special collections is an opportunity to create an active, integrated learning experience. Primary source literacy “reflects a multifaceted, interconnected, specialized set of both higher- and lower-order skills required of students working with primary sources” (Libraries Unlimited, 2014, p. xviii). After a brief review of the literature and learning objectives associated with primary source literacy, I will present, as example, a stand –alone workshop I have taught successfully. This learning activity uses archival resources typically available at school and university archives. The session was developed for first year history courses studying World War Two. Students discuss how the War impacted their school (and its students, faculty) based on hands-on exploration of documents and artifacts from the University’s archives. I will also share feedback from faculty collaborators about using the school’s special collections in these workshops. The information presented will provide a springboard for group discussion about teaching with archival materials, especially from the point of view of small or mid-sized college archival collections. With audience participation, we will explore ways this learning activity could be adapted for other disciplines, including composition classes and first year seminars encouraging engagement with the institution.