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Entries by Scottish Information Literacy (38)


Citizens’ approaches to evaluating political ‘facts’ in the fake news era

Webinar Description - Wednesday 19th June, 15.00 - 16.00pm

Recent years have seen significant public discourse surrounding the concepts of ‘post-truth politics’, ‘fake news’, and ‘alternative facts’ online, with much of it focusing on ‘Brexit’ or Donald Trump’s election campaign and presidency. This webinar will reflect upon recent research into fact response, fact checking, and the journey of the political fact. This research, conducted during the 2017 UK General Election campaign, consisted of two interrelated studies: 1) an online survey of the general public (n = 538); and 2) a series of 23 electronically-assisted interviews with citizens in North-East Scotland. Both studies explored the tactics and heuristics used in evaluating the credibility of ‘facts’ presented online by Scottish political actors.

You can access the webinar via this link:


Rita Marcella

With over thirty years of experience as a researcher and academic in information and library science, Rita Marcella is now Professor of Information Management at the Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen. Current research projects focus on: the building of a classification and taxonomy of information beliefs; the research impact agenda amongst senior, early and mid-career researchers in Information Science; and information behaviour in the context of post-truth politics. She is also evolving theory around information behaviour beliefs and building a network on information as a means of empowerment, information poverty and disadvantage. Previous research has focussed on information behaviour in political and business contexts. Rita has served on national and international funding panels and acts as a referee for a range of international journals and conferences. She has also held posts in senior management in universities but is now focussing on research and teaching.

Dr Graeme Baxter is a Research Fellow within the School of Creative and Cultural Business at Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen. His research interests include: the provision and use of government, parliamentary and citizenship information; freedom of information legislation; the provision of information during government public consultation exercises; and the use of the Internet by political parties, elected members and electoral candidates. His doctoral thesis was on the communication and exchange of information between state and stakeholders. He has a keen interest in ‘fake news’ and the credibility of information provided by political actors.

Posted by Jenny Foreman, Scottish Government Library


Can’t make it to EBLIP10? Fear not – we’ve got you covered!

The 10th International Evidence Based Library and Information Practice Conference is in Glasgow, UK from 17-19 June ( We have 5 exciting tours on offer too (

However, we know many people can’t take the time off work or make the journey to Glasgow so we have other ways for people to attend.

 If you’re too far away to join us in person, you can join us virtually. We are making the conference available virtually for the nominal fee of £65. Virtual conference attendance includes all of the keynote speakers (David Stewart, President of CILIP; Dr Frankie Wilson, Head of Assessment at the Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford; and Donna Scheeder, Past President of IFLA and SLA) and one track of the presentations, including topics such as Meeting User Needs; Value, Impact, and Outcomes; National Initiatives for Health Libraries; and Emerging Roles for Librarians (more information about the sessions are available here, in Room GH514).

 If you’re in the UK and want to participate in some evidence-based practice continuing professional development, you can join us for the pre-conference workshops at Sunday 16 June. We have two morning and two afternoon workshops on advocacy and impact, using systematic reviews to support evidence-based practice, incorporating evidence-based practice, and outcome measurement in academic libraries. These half-day workshops are £50 each (including lunch). More information can be found here. To get the information needed for workshop registration, please email

Rebekah (Becky) Willson, MLIS, PhD, FHEA

Department of Computer & Information Sciences

University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland

Posted by Jenny Foreman, Scottish Government Library



Free place at Evidence Based Library & Information Practice Conference (EBLIP)


Free place at Evidence Based Library and Information Practice Conference (EBLIP)

This year the international EBLIP Conference is coming to Glasgow and the programme looks fantastic. We are delighted to sponsor a free full place at the event 17-19 June at University of Strathclyde for one CILIPS member and this will get you:

Attendance at three-day EBLIP Conference Programme

  • Opening Night Welcome Reception
  • Conference Dinner 
  • Daily Food & Refreshments (including daily lunch and session break refreshments)

To enter just give us your name and contact details and answer a quick question on this form by 15th May:

We will ask the winner to write a short blog based on their experience at the event. 

CILIPS Conference - Final Earlybird reminder

Just a final reminder that the earlybird rate for the CILIPS Conference closes on Monday so be quick if you want to join us on June 3-4th in Dundee!


 Sean McNamara  Head of CILIP in Scotland

Posted by Jenny Foreman, Scottish Government Library


An investigation into Scottish teenagers’ information literacy and search skills

This valuable research work was conducted in collaboration with the IL CoP, by Morgan Harvey, David Brazier and Geoff Walton and has now been published in the journal ‘Information Research’

Introduction. This paper presents the results of a study investigating the information literacy and search skills of young people in Scotland. 
Method. The participants, secondary school pupils between the ages of 13 and 14 (n=57), completed two out of four different search tasks from the TREC HARD collection, for which the correct answers (i.e. relevant documents) were known. Their interactions with the search system were logged and information about their own perceptions of the task were collected through pre- and post-task questionnaires. 
Analysis. The log data from the search system was analysed using the R statistical software package to understand the performance and behaviour of the participants when conducting the search tasks. 
Findings. While we identified some evidence that information literacy and search skills were being employed, overall performance was low with participants often unable to produce successful queries and/or unable to identify relevant documents, even when some were present in the results. Despite assessing their own performance as being good, the pupils struggled to formulate good quality queries to assess documents for relevance, frequently selecting non-relevant sources. 
Conclusion. Search performance and ability to identify relevant information was generally poor, a fact that participants themselves were frequently unable to recognise. The results also suggest a reliance on complex search assistance tools (such as spell checking and query suggestions), which are common features of major search engines, but not of smaller systems, which pupils are also likely to have to use. Despite the pupils having been giving some information literacy training in the previous year, the results suggest that more needs to be done to help school pupils in searching for and assessing relevant source documents.

Dr Morgan Harvey, Senior Lecturer and Computer Science Programme Leader, Department of Computer and Information Sciences, Northumbria University, Newcastle

Posted by Jenny Foreman, Scottish Government Library


White Paper on Online Harms: blog post by Stéphane Goldstein

Hello everyone,
As you might have seen, the UK Government has just published its long-awaited White Paper on Online Harms, which is available at . Most of this is devoted to means of combating dangerous or unacceptable online behaviour, but there's also a chapter on media literacy, and this addresses issues that are closely related to information literacy. In particular, it proposes the development of a national media literacy strategy. Well worth a read, especially since the document recognises libraries as one of the key stakeholders to be involved in the formulation of the strategy.
I've also attempted to set out some thoughts about this in a blog piece at .
Please note that the Government is consulting on the questions raised in the White Paper, with a response deadline on 1st July - feel free to let your views be known!

Best wishes,
Stéphane Goldstein
InformAll email: Twitter: stephgold7 website:

And here are some related useful links collated by the Scottish Government Library

DCMS is building on its report on disinformation by setting up a Subcommittee on Disinformation to monitor this area on an ongoing basis

 Posted by Jenny Foreman, Scottish Government Library