ALISS Recommends: Useful Resources for Training and Student Inductions.

September 26, 2011 952

Are you trying to cope with 100s of student induction sessions? Looking for inspiration in designing training courses?

Here are some recommended resources from ALISS.

Recommended Information/ literacy skills tutorials:

University of Sydney, Australia

This has an excellent iResearch tool page which contains fun interactive modules with quizzes and activities that can be played by students online. Alternatively print off the modules. These give the learning objectives plus the information. There is some emphasis upon locating specifically Australian information. However, there are some good general topics which include: scholarly versus non-scholarly resources, avoiding plagiarism and an entertaining ‘find that cheese’ game which teaches students to find items on their reading list!

University of Newcastle, Australia

The InfoSkills information literacy and academic integrity tutorial has 5 modules.

  • Planning for research (List strategies for getting started )
  • Finding Information (Use Library catalogues to find resources, select Library databases to find journal articles, Identify effective search techniques, describe the characteristics of Internet search engines)
  • Evaluating Information
  • Writing and Plagiarism (Identify strategies for good academic practice in writing, e.g. note taking, acknowledging sources, techniques for managing and compiling reference lists and bibliographies)
  • Using information ethically (Use information appropriately without breaching copyright, censorship and freedom of speech issues, use of inclusive language)

University of Leicester

The library has a series of useful teach-yourself tutorials which use captivate technology. There is a 5 minute presentation on starting research going beyond the reading list which seems especially useful.

University of Leeds

Useful division of the site into sections for new students, students, researchers, and lecturers. In the new students section there are videos which give the experiences of actual students. The researcher’s section targets needs effectively. It includes sections on managing information, keeping up to date and disseminating information. There are useful links and workbooks which can be printed out.

Open University

Safari is intended for beginners. It is divided into seven sections, each covering a particular aspect of information skills:

  • Understanding information (helps the user identify different types and what they might need for study);
  • Unpacking information (understanding where information comes from, who disseminates it and different types);
  • Planning a search;
  • Searching (searching on the web, techniques such as phrase searching);
  • Evaluating research results;
  • Organising information (social bookmarking, compiling bibliographies);
  • Where do I go from here (publishing and disseminating , keeping up to date).

They also produce the Information Skills for Researchers: To support OU postgraduate students. Includes sections with advice on literature searching, writing and referencing.  

Library Research Skills Tutorial

Provides training in the skills needed to conduct library-based research in the arts, humanities and social sciences. It has been developed for postgraduate researchers by the Senate House Library. Topics covered include: Planning Library Research, Using Libraries and Referencing and Bibliography.

Writing Resources

A series of resources from the Royal Literary fund. They include Essay Writing: a Guide for Undergraduates a comprehensive guide to essay writing, written for students by Dr David Kennedy. Topics covered include understanding the question, literature searching and drafting essays. Mission Possible: the Study Skills Pack is a range of study skills materials developed for students, tutors and teachers by Mario Petrucci.  Includes basic study skills techniques, presentation skills, writing skills. Writing Dissertations: a Guide for Graduates gives support and guidance on the process of writing a dissertation or thesis. It was developed by Andrew Ward and Peter Wood. Covers literature reviews, revising editing. Also section on for students where English is a second Language.

Companion for Undergraduate Dissertations: Sociology, Anthropology, Politics, Social Policy, Social Work and Criminology

This site provides free access to a survival guide published by the Higher Education Academy’s Centre for Sociology, Anthropology and Politics, the Centre for Social Work and Policy and Sheffield Hallam University. It provides useful tips on literature searching skills and preparing a dissertation at undergraduate level. It also includes chapters for lecturers on supporting students and plagiarism. These include case studies of good practice. There is also a glossary of terms and bibliography of further reading.

Copyright Toolkit

Developed by Eduserve it provides practical, pragmatic advice, within an understanding of the legal framework, on how to license copyright works, who to approach, how best to approach them and how to negotiate the best deal. Includes online exercise which teach the legal background to copyright and the structure of the Rights clearance process.

Information Literacy Resources

Use these to keep up to date with what other librarians are doing!

Information Literacy Website

Maintained by information professionals from key UK organisations including CILIP and SCONUL. Aims to support practitioners by offering free access to news, book reviews and case studies of best practice.

Journal of Information Literacy

Open access scholarly journal covering the philosophy, technology and practice of information literacy. Excellent starting point for locating up to date materials.

Handbook for Information Literacy Teaching

Excellent free resource developed by group of subject librarians at Cardiff University to support their colleagues in Information Services as they developed their information literacy teaching. Chapters include planning lessons, developing teaching aids, evaluating and improving teacher skills. Of great value for those developing their own courses.

Information Literacy resource bank

Originally developed for staff at the University of Cardiff it includes some interesting examples of ‘bite sized’ tutorials on research, internet searching skills. There are also examples of flowcharts and online quizzes.

LOEX: Clearing House for Library Instruction

International membership organisation which supports training and information literacy in libraries. Website has an excellent archive of conference papers, plus a free directory of links to online tutorials, case studies, and other recommended teaching and learning materials for library staff.


Excellent JISC email discussion list useful for keeping up to date with the latest events, research and publications in the field. You can view recent postings and archived messages from the website or sign up to join.

ALISS is a not-for-profit unincorporated professional society. It is an independent group which was formed in April 2005 by the former committee of (Aslib Social Science Information Group and Network) The aim of the group is to; Provide opportunities for networking and self-development offer a forum for communication create a network of cooperation and a forum for discussion about emerging issues in social science librarianship.

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