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Information literacy is best taught through a collaboration between the teaching librarians and course instructors. Finding and engaging with information critically happens more effectively in the context of learning about a subject.

Our instruction

  • Is student-centered;
  • Incorporates active learning through in-class activities and group work;
  • Addresses a variety of learning styles;
  • Is aimed at diverse student populations;
  • Appears in multiple learning environments; and
  • Is inclusive of students with broad ranges of abilities and life experiences.

Librarians can suggest specific assignments, teaching strategies, rubrics, and other approaches that painlessly integrate information literacy into your course curriculum.

Ways we can collaborate with you

  • Design assignments that emphasize critical thinking and effective research skills.
  • Develop information literacy assessment activities or rubrics.
  • Design and create class research guides and tutorials.
  • Explain the research process and the best resources for a topic.
  • Show students how to organize information and incorporate it into a research project.
  • Develop an appropriate timeline for research assignments.
  • Create integrated classroom-based information literacy instruction or online workshops to integrate research skills into a semester-long course.

Types of Instruction

Any of these can be conducted face-to-face or online.

1. Instruction Sessions

When your students have an assignment that requires research, scheduling a library session can make their research, and your grading, easier. Our librarians specialize in subjects and are familiar with the resources your students will need to complete the assignment effectively. Call or e-mail your liaison to set up a session.

For an effective session, we ask that you:

  • Make sure to schedule your instruction in advance to ensure the availability of a room and your librarian.
  • Schedule the library session during regular class time.
  • Accompany your class to the Library to emphasize the importance of the material being covered.
  • Provide the librarian with your session objectives and a copy of the class assignment before the session.
  • Give the students the research assignment ahead of time so they get the full benefit of attending the session.

2. Consultations

Librarians will provide individual or small-group consultations on research or citing to UAB students, faculty, or staff. These are one-hour appointments with a librarian. Librarians can provide:

  • Research assistance and guidance.
  • Pointers on specialized databases to get in-depth information.
  • Assistance with selecting search terms.
  • Search strategies and tips.
  • Searches for people with disabilities.
  • Consultations can be requested online.

3. Workshops

Workshops are open to UAB students, faculty, or staff. They typically last an hour. We also offer certificate programs in some disciplines; attendees receive a certificate after attending a certain number of sessions.

If you would like a workshop on one of the topics conducted for your class or group, contact your liaison.

4. Tutorials

Librarians can assist faculty with the creation of guides associated with courses. If you would like a guide for your class or assignment, contact your liaison.

More information on integrating library resources into your course can be found at the guide to Affordable Instructional Materials & Linking to Library Resources.

Online Learning

The UAB Libraries supports the needs of students and faculty, teaching, and learning online. The most effective support for your class is embedding your liaison. Embedding a liaison provides consistent and personalized assistance for your students. Including a librarian also extends students' access to research assistance after a library instruction session.

An embedded librarian is especially useful for online classes that involve a research component.

Embedded librarians can:

  • Set up virtual office hours in Canvas;
  • Be a contact for online students;
  • Provide library instruction via GoToMeeting or GoToTraining;
  • Create research guides targeted to your course's research assignments;
  • Recommend eBooks and already-created guides;
  • Create videos and other tutorials with quizzes for the course; or
  • Design pre- and post-tests to assess students' research skills.

If you would like a librarian to work with your online class, contact your liaison.


The following are resources for UAB faculty:

Mervyn H. Sterne Library

917 13th St S
Birmingham, AL

(205) 934-6364

Lister Hill Library of the Health Sciences

1700 University Blvd
Birmingham, AL

(205) 975-4821

Reynolds-Finley Historical Library

1700 University Blvd - 3rd Floor
Birmingham, AL

(205) 934-4475

Alabama Museum of the Health Sciences

1700 University Blvd - 3rd Floor
Birmingham, AL

(205) 934-4475

Lister Hill Library at University Hospital

615 18th Street S - P235 West Pavilion
Birmingham, AL

(205) 934-2275

801 Building

801 5th Ave South
Room 1111
Birmingham, AL

(205) 934-5432

J. Ellis Sparks Medical Library

301 Governors Drive SE - 3rd Floor
Huntsville, AL 35801

(256) 551-4405

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