What is Information Literacy?
In this digital age, there is a lot of talk about Information Literacy. First and foremost, information literacy means having information skills. These skills require individuals to be familiar with print materials (books, periodicals, and so forth), as well as with the electronic resources in the Library/Media Center (Internet, CD-ROMs, and databases). These skills enable patrons to locate information on a variety of topics in both print and non-print formats.
In the traditional library, individuals must learn the floor plan in order to locate resources. Hands-on resources are very valuable when patrons utilize the card catalog to locate them, along with the table of contents and index to pinpoint the desired information. The Internet exposes patrons to an entirely new “floor plan,” however. Individuals now have virtual access to libraries throughout the state, across the country, and even around the world!
In the state of Michigan, every resident has free, 24-hour access to the Michigan Electronic Library (MeL), located at http://www.mel.org/SPT–BrowseResourcesNewMeL.php. Here, individuals can locate magazines, newspaper and journal articles, books, and evaluated websites. In addition, there is a link to MelCat, a service that allows patrons to request books from hundreds of libraries around the state. The books are then delivered to the local library of the patron’s choice. Consider visiting MeL to conveniently locate reliable, up-to-date resources.