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Faculty Toolkit: Library Instruction

Library resources and information for MSUB faculty.

Schedule an Instruction Session

To schedule an instruction session, complete the Library Instruction Request form.

  • Book instruction session early to secure your first choice of date and time.
  • Consider the timing of the library instruction session. Too much time between the session and assignment is not always effective. Also, too close to the assignment due date should be avoided.
  • Provide the librarian with supporting documentation of the assignment's details and any other pertinent information.
  • Determine clear learning outcomes for the session and communicate these to the librarian.
  • Shorter, more frequent sessions are often better than one longer session. Please consider this based on your time constraints.

Best Practices for Instruction Sessions

Here are some best practices for the library instruction session:


  • Make sure students know how to log into an on-campus computer.

  • Make sure students know the location of the library instruction session.


  • Try to attend the session to support the instruction session and provide additional guidance as needed to your students. Students benefit the most when both the librarian and the faculty member is present.

  • Faculty input during the instruction session is encouraged and helpful!


  • Encourage students to regularly visit the Library's website and to ask for research help at the Ask Here Desk.

  • Encourage students who missed the session to visit the Library website and drop by for an in-person visit. Librarians are always available for one-on-one assistance.

Virtual Instruction Example

Library Instruction Sessions

Students who know their way around the physical library and the library's rich array of electronic resources are better students! Librarians help students learn to navigate library resources and by teaching information literacy skills.


Library instruction lessons can range from a broad overview of library resources to instruction targeted to a specific assignment. The librarian will work with you to make sure your students receive the information they need to be successful.


Following the fluid nature of classes in the 2020-2021 school year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there are options for both in-person and virtual instruction sessions moving forward. This most feasible option will be assessed on a case-by-case basis in the 2021-2022 academic year.


After some trial and error during the first few weeks of class, we have discovered that the way a virtual library instruction works the best is for the librarian leading the session to send the instructor a WebEx meeting link and have the instructor forward that link to their students.  The students can then join the meeting at the designated time from their laptop, tablet, phone, etc.  Each person joining individually allows the session to be as interactive as possible.  Information about using WebEx can be found here  Please note that students should NOT be sitting in the classroom together.  When more than one person joins the WebEx within 30 feet of another person joining the same WebEx it generates a feedback echo that makes hearing the session impossible. 


Unfortunately, not all classrooms on campus are created equal and technology limitations make a session in your classroom very challenging.  A successful library instruction session in your classroom take additional work on your end.  The room will need a web cam, a microphone, and speakers loud enough to reach everyone in the room at a minimum.  Most classrooms do not have this.  If you do not know if your classroom contains these features, please contact the IT department at 257-5700 for assistance.  If your room does have the necessary technology, a conversation with the librarian conducting the instruction session to determine additional logistics can then take place.  Be aware that even with the needed technology in place the session will be less interactive than you may anticipate. 


Information literacy is the ability of individuals to “recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and use effectively the needed information.”


  • Determine the extent of information needed
  • Access needed information effectively and efficiently
  • Evaluate information and sources critically
  • Incorporate selected information into one’s knowledge base
  • Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose or goal
  • Understand the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information
  • Access and use information ethically and legally

Learn more about information literacy by clicking here.

Research in the Information Age

MSUB Librarians also teach information literacy skills to students in the 3 credit course, LSCI 125:  Research in the Information Age. This course fulfills a gen ed requirement and is taught both online and in person and sections.