INFO 210-12
Reference and Information Services
Summer 2021 Syllabus

José A. Aguiñaga, M.L.S., M.P.A., & Ed.D.
E-mail
Other contact information: 602-904-1540 (cell) text or call before 8pm (PDT).
Office Location: Glendale, AZ
Office Hours: By appointment or Zoom.


Syllabus Links
Textbooks
CLOs
Competencies
Prerequisites
Resources
Canvas Login and Tutorials
iSchool eBookstore
 

Canvas Information: Courses will be available beginning June 1, 2021, 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.

The course will be automatically available to students on June 1, 2021.

Course Description

A process-oriented examination of how information professionals answer reference questions. The interpersonal skills required for effective question negotiation and the sources with which questions are answered are stressed.

Full Description

This course provides an overview of reference and information services. We will be examining and evaluating key information sources in a variety of formats and becoming familiar with professional resources. Because the field of librarianship is changing rapidly, we will be exploring various methods and models for delivering information and examining how emerging trends as well as ways to use new ideas and skills that are impacting the future of reference services and access to information. 

Course Requirements

  • Assignment 1 (36%)
    Discussion Topic (4% X 9) = 36%
  • Assignment 2 (6%)
    Sharing Post (3% X 2) = 6%

  • Assignment 3 (28%)
    Search Activities (4% x 7) = 28%

  • Assignment 4 (30%)
    Choose one of the assignment project options or propose an alternative project of your own.

Course Calendar

Week Overview of Class Readings, Activities, and Assignments Due Dates*
Wk 1
  • Post Introductions
  • Week 1 overview page
  • Reading: Chapter 1 or choose a reading from the list of e-alternative readings. 
  • RUSA guidelines
  • Course video lecture
  • Discussion Topic (D1) -- 4%
June 6
Wk 2
  • Week 2 overview
  • Reading: Chapter 13 or choose a reading from the list of e-alternative readings.
  • Course video lecture
  • Discussion Topic (D2) -- 4%
  • Search Activity (S2) -- 4% 
June 13
Wk 3
  • Week 3 overview
  • Reading: Chapters 22 or choose a reading from the list of e-alternative readings.
  • Course video lecture
  • Discussion Topic (D3) -- 4% 
  • Search Activity (S3) -- 4% 
June 20
Wk 4
  • Week 4 overview
  • Reading: Chapters 18 or choose a reading from the list of e-alternative readings.
  • Course video lecture
  • Discussion Topic (D4) -- 4%
  • Search Activity (S4) -- 4% 
  • Sharing Post (SP4) -- 3%
June 27
Wk 5
  • Week 5 overview
  • Reading: Chapters 20 or choose a reading from the list of e-alternative readings.
  • Course video lecture
  • Discussion Topic (D5) -- 4%
  • Search Activity (S5) -- 4%

    **July 4 is Independence Day (Holiday) observed on July 5.
July 4
Wk 6
  • Week 6 overview page
  • Readings: Chapters 16 and 19 or choose two readings for those chapters from the list of e-alternative readings.
  • Course video lectures
  • Discussion Topic (D6) -- 4%
  • Search Activity (S6) -- 4%
July 11
Wk 7
  • Week 7 overview page
  • Readings: Chapters 14 and 21 or choose two readings from the list of e-alternative readings.
  • Course video lectures
  • Discussion Topic (D7) -- 4%
July 18
Wk 8
  • Week 8 overview page
  • Reading: Chapter 15 or choose one reading for that chapter from the list of e-alternative readings.
  • Course video lecture
  • Discussion Topic (D8) -- 4%
  • Project Assignment - (A4) -- 30%
July 25
Wk 9
  • Week 9 overview page
  • Reading: Chapter 17 or choose one reading for that chapter from the list of e-alternative readings. 
  • Course video lecture
  • Discussion Topic (D9) -- 4%
  • Search Activity (S9) -- 4%
Aug 1
Wk 10
  • Week 10 overview page
  • Course video lecture
  • Search Activity (S10) -- 4%
  • Sharing Post (SP10) -- 3%
     
Aug 6
 

*Due Dates are subject to change with fair notice.

Course ends August 6, 2021:

  • All work must be submitted by midnight on the last day of class!
  • The course content will be available for a couple of additional weeks.

 

Description of Assignments and Grading Criteria

NOTE: If you have some special circumstance that makes the completion of some activities difficult, contact me about possible alternative activities.

 Assignment 1: Discussion Topics (D) = (9 X 4%) = 36%

  • CLO4: Describe the relationships between user needs, information resources, and relevant information technologies.
  • CL05: Describe current issues and trends in reference services, including the impact of technology on user needs and reference interactions.

  • CLO6: Evaluate reference services that address the needs of a diverse and changing society.

  • CLO7: Understand the relationship between reference service and information literacy instruction.

  • CLO8: Begin to develop a personal philosophy of reference service.

  • NOTE: You may be able to use a number of the topics for your weekly discussions as evidence to support various core competencies for your e-portfolio so choose your topics strategically!

Assignment 2: Sharing Post (SP) = (3% x 2) = 6%

  • There are "sharing" posts during 2 of the 10 weeks of class. Each sharing post is worth 3% of the final grade. INFO 210 Course Learning Outcomes addressed:

    • CLO4: Describe the relationships between user needs, information resources, and relevant information technologies.

    • CL05: Describe current issues and trends in reference services, including the impact of technology on user needs and reference interactions.

    • CLO6: Evaluate reference services that address the needs of a diverse and changing society.

    • CLO7: Understand the relationship between reference service and information literacy instruction.

    • CLO8: Begin to develop a personal philosophy of reference service.

Assignment 3: Search Activities (S) = (4% X 7) = 28%

In seven weeks of class, Search Activities will have you actually look for appropriate sources for "information quest" questions, try search strategies, or examine specific types of resources. There are 4 questions per search activity. If there is more than one option for any of the four questions, you only need to answer one of those options per question. See the scoring rubric for details on the search activities and the grading criteria. 

NOTE: If you are working in a special library setting and would like to propose an alternative assignment that would give you comparable skills using reference sources in a specific type of library setting, I will be happy to consider it. INFO 210 Course Learning Outcome addressed:

  • CLO2: Use basic reference tools and searching techniques to answer a wide range of questions.

​​​​​
Assignment 4: Major project = 30% 

INFO 210 Course Learning Outcomes addressed depend on the assignment option selected:

  • CLO1: Identify and assess the characteristics and functions of various types of reference sources.
  • CLO4: Describe the relationships between user needs, information resources, and relevant information technologies.

  • CL05: Describe current issues and trends in reference services, including the impact of technology on user needs and reference interactions.

  • CLO6: Evaluate reference services that address the needs of a diverse and changing society.

  • CLO7: Understand the relationship between reference service and information literacy instruction.

There are a variety of project options for Assignment 4. The grading rubrics will vary depending on your choices for each of these two assignments.

Inclusion Statement

Students are expected to participate fully in all class activities.  It is expected that students will be open-minded and participate fully in discussions in class and debate in a mature and respectful manner.  Use of derogatory, condescending, or offensive language including profanity is prohibited.  Disagreement is healthy and perfectly acceptable.   Expressing disagreement should always include an explanation of your reasoning and, whenever possible, evidence to support your position. In accordance with San José State University's Policies, the Student Code of Conduct, and applicable state and federal laws, discrimination based on gender, gender identity, gender expression, race, nationality, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, or disability is prohibited in any form.

Course Grading

  • See the description of the assignments in Canvas for links to possible exemplars, the grading rubrics, and links to "how-to" videos.
  • All work is due by the date listed, but there is a two-day no-questions-asked grace period for all assignments. If you are unable to complete the work by the end of the grace period, there is a 10% penalty for unexcused late submissions for discussions and mini-activities. The late penalty for an unexcused late submission for the major assignment is 5%.
  • You are responsible for keeping track of assignment due dates, submitting work in a timely manner, and requesting an extension if the need should arise.  
  • Check the grading criteria provided in the scoring rubrics before submitting assignments to be sure that you are addressing all of the elements that should be included in the assignments. 
  • The details of the assignments, grading criteria, and grading rubrics are subject to minor adjustments with fair notice. 
  • With the exception of the standard two-day, no-questions-asked grace period for the assignment due the last week of class, no work will be accepted after the end of the course unless you have made arrangements that meet the university criteria and have been approved by me in writing or by email. 

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 202

Course Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Identify and assess the characteristics and functions of various types of reference sources.
  2. Use basic reference tools and searching techniques to answer a wide range of questions.
  3. Conduct effective reference interviews.
  4. Describe the relationships between user needs, information resources, and relevant information technologies.
  5. Describe current issues and trends in reference services, including the impact of technology on user needs and reference interactions.
  6. Evaluate reference services that address the needs of a diverse and changing society.
  7. Understand the relationship between reference service and information literacy instruction.
  8. Begin to develop a personal philosophy of reference service.

Core Competencies (Program Learning Outcomes)

INFO 210 supports the following core competencies:

  1. F Use the basic concepts and principles related to the selection, evaluation, organization, and preservation of physical and digital information items.
  2. J Describe the fundamental concepts of information-seeking behaviors and how they should be considered when connecting individuals or groups with accurate, relevant and appropriate information.
  3. N Evaluate programs and services using measurable criteria.

Textbooks

Recommended Textbooks:

  • Cassell, K.A., & Hiremath, U. (2018). Reference and information services: An introduction (4th ed.). ALA Neal-Schuman. Available as free eBook through King Libaryarrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain

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: https://www.sjsu.edu/curriculum/courses/syllabus-info.php. 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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