What about librarians?
The Chronicle's recent article on plagiarism accusations in Coursera courses kicked off my exploration into MOOCs and the role librarians can play. A recent RUSA post on Chasing Reference points to the lack of research assignments in MOOCs and the need for embedded librarians. Even though students enrolled in a MOOC do not typically have access to the parent institution's fee-based library resources, information literacy and research skills can still be taught and are an important component in courses that ask students to explore complex issues and social problems. Simply providing students with a reading list is not going to teach them to be savvy information consumers who can effectively find authoritative information and critically evaluate sources. So, what's our first step?
Librarians should join a MOOC.
This is the advice of Andy Burkhardt (Information Tyrannosaur) and Brian Mathews (The Ubiquitous Librarian). Burkhardt emphasizes the professional development opportunities for librarians to learn new skills, while Mathews describes librarian participation as an opportunity to gain platform "fluency" and redefine/expand the role of librarians in the learning process (and in the minds of students and faculty).
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