INFO 234-01
INFO 234-10

Dr. Carrie Gardner
Other contact information: I am not in San Jose. Please email me via the Canvas software. 
Office location: Remote 
Office Hours: Virtual office hours by appointment.  Please email me via the Canvas software in order to determine a mutual time and method of communication. 

Syllabus Sections
Workload Expectations
iSchool Resources
Canvas Login and Tutorials
iSchool eBookstore

Canvas Information: Courses will be available beginning August 21st at 6 am PT unless you are taking an intensive or a one-unit or two-unit class that starts on a different day. In that case, the class will open on the first day that the class meets.

You will be enrolled in the Canvas site automatically.


Focuses on current intellectual freedom issues and the centrality of intellectual freedom to librarianship. 


Course Calendar



Date Assignment Available to Students

Due Date

Library Bill of Rights (Supports CLOs #1#2 and #5)

This assignment provides an opportunity to examine the tenets ALA puts forward in the Library Bill of Rights.


August 21, 2018

September 23, 2018

Librarian Interview (Supports CLOs #1-5)

This assignment provides an opportunity to learn how a working librarian handles the issues involved with intellectual freedom.


August 21, 2018

December 2, 2018

Resource Selection Policy (Supports CLO #1 and #2)

This assignment provides an opportunity to examine library resource selection policies’ influence on the intellectual freedom of patrons.


September 9, 2018

October 21, 2018

Filter Assignment (Supports CLOs #1-4)

This assignment provides an opportunity to examine the legal and ethical issues involved with deploying filter software in a library setting.


October 14, 2018

November 18, 2018

Privacy and Confidentiality (Supports CLOs #1 and #5) This assignment provides an opportunity to explore how library policies uphold and undermine patron privacy.


November 4, 2018

December 9, 2018

Class Participation via Canvas Discussion Board (Supports CLOs #1-5)


All semester long

At least one post each week per the weekly instructions posted on Sundays.

Detailed information about assignments can be found in the Canvas software.

Modules included in the course include but are not limited to:

  1. First Amendment in American libraries.
  2. The role librarians can take in providing access to information.
  3. The role librarians can take in preventing access to information.
  4. The ALA Library Bill of Rights
  5. Banned Books Week.
  6. Selection policies.
  7. Reconsideration policies.
  8. The ethical and legal issues around deploying filter software in libraries.
  9. Privacy and confidentiality of the personally identifiable information of patrons.
  10. Organizations that promote the removal and/or restriction of information from American society and/or libraries.
  11. The impact of patron behavior policies.

Course Grading

  • No extra credit is available.
  • Points will be deducted for grammar and spelling errors. 
  • Please use the APA Style manual for all citations.
  • Two points will be deducted for each day an assignment is late.
  • Course modules open every Sunday. It is highly recommended that you log in early in the week in order to learn what is required for the module.

Other readings will be provided by the instructor. 

Course Workload Expectations

Success in this course is based on the expectation that students will spend, for each unit of credit, a minimum of forty-five hours over the length of the course (normally 3 hours per unit per week with 1 of the hours used for lecture) for instruction or preparation/studying or course related activities including but not limited to internships, labs, clinical practica. Other course structures will have equivalent workload expectations as described in the syllabus.

Instructional time may include but is not limited to:
Working on posted modules or lessons prepared by the instructor; discussion forum interactions with the instructor and/or other students; making presentations and getting feedback from the instructor; attending office hours or other synchronous sessions with the instructor.

Student time outside of class:
In any seven-day period, a student is expected to be academically engaged through submitting an academic assignment; taking an exam or an interactive tutorial, or computer-assisted instruction; building websites, blogs, databases, social media presentations; attending a study group;contributing to an academic online discussion; writing papers; reading articles; conducting research; engaging in small group work.

Course Prerequisites

INFO 200

Course Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Describe the concept of patron privacy and demonstrate familiarity with relevant state and federal laws.
  2. Describe how the First Amendment and numerous laws relate to libraries and patron access to information.
  3. Identify the philosophical underpinnings of selection and censorship of library resources.
  4. Describe how Internet filtering software influences access to information.
  5. Define intellectual freedom and describe how the American Library Association illustrates its existence in library service.

Core Competencies (Program Learning Outcomes)

INFO 234 supports the following core competencies:

  1. A Demonstrate awareness of the ethics, values, and foundational principles of one of the information professions, and discuss the importance of intellectual freedom within that profession.
  2. C Recognize the diversity (such as cultural and economic) in the clientele and employees of an information organization and be familiar with actions the organization should take to address this diversity.


No Textbooks For This Course.

Grading Scale

The standard SJSU School of Information Grading Scale is utilized for all iSchool courses:

97 to 100 A
94 to 96 A minus
91 to 93 B plus
88 to 90 B
85 to 87 B minus
82 to 84 C plus
79 to 81 C
76 to 78 C minus
73 to 75 D plus
70 to 72 D
67 to 69 D minus
Below 67 F


In order to provide consistent guidelines for assessment for graduate level work in the School, these terms are applied to letter grades:

  • C represents Adequate work; a grade of "C" counts for credit for the course;
  • B represents Good work; a grade of "B" clearly meets the standards for graduate level work or undergraduate (for BS-ISDA);
    For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA, Informatics, BS-ISDA) — INFO 200, INFO 202, INFO 204 — the iSchool requires that students earn a B in the course. If the grade is less than B (B- or lower) after the first attempt you will be placed on administrative probation. You must repeat the class if you wish to stay in the program. If - on the second attempt - you do not pass the class with a grade of B or better (not B- but B) you will be disqualified.
  • A represents Exceptional work; a grade of "A" will be assigned for outstanding work only.

Graduate Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA). Undergraduates must maintain a 2.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

University Policies

Per University Policy S16-9, university-wide policy information relevant to all courses, such as academic integrity, accommodations, etc. will be available on Office of Graduate and Undergraduate Programs' Syllabus Information web page at: Make sure to visit this page, review and be familiar with these university policies and resources.

In order to request an accommodation in a class please contact the Accessible Education Center and register via the MyAEC portal.

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