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Library and Information Literacy Instruction at Harper College: Home


This guide is an introduction to information literacy and library instruction in the Harper College Library. It will tell you a bit more about information literacy and what it means at Harper, give you details about the instruction program at the Harper College Library, and help you request an instruction session for your own class. 

If you have questions about this guide or about the Harper College Library's instruction offerings, please contact our librarians at

Information Literacy and Libraries

Information literacy is an important part of what libraries do, and it is an integral component of the Harper College Library's mission. Here is how the Association of College and Research Libraries defines information literacy:

"Information literacy is the set of integrated abilities encompassing the reflective discovery of information, the understanding of how information is produced and valued, and the use of information in creating new knowledge and participating ethically in communities of learning."

-From the Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education from the Association of College and Research Libraries division of the American Library Association

This definition forms the basis for our Information Literacy instruction program at the Harper College Library.

Information Literacy and Harper

Information literacy is one of Harper's General Education Learning Outcomes. After their time at Harper, students should be able to:

"Apply a variety of credible sources to support a given topic."

-From Harper's General Education Learning Outcomes

While students learn information literacy skills across the curriculum and across departments on campus, Library instruction is one important way for students to develop these critical skills.

Video: What Is Information Literacy?

Information Literacy vs. Library Instruction

While you'll often hear people, us included, use the terms interchangeably, technically information literacy instruction does not mean the same thing as library instruction! Library instruction is focused on resources students can access through the Library (e.g., databases, help guides, reference services, etc.). While we definitely do library instruction at the Harper College Library, the goal of our program is to go beyond that. We aim to help students develop information literacy skills that transcend simply knowing how to use a tool. We want to help students learn to use information wisely and ethically in their classes at Harper and throughout their lives.

Our librarians are always happy to teach your students about a specific tool, but know that we are always looking for ways to include broader lessons that help students become effective consumers and producers of information.