• MARS4P01: Sources and Methods in Medieval and Renaissance Studies

    Leah Knight, David Sharron
    Middle Ages, Renaissance, Inquiry-based learning, Sources, Library science, Education--Research, Education, Secondary--Sources
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    Four information-literacy objectives were integrated into a course on Sources and Methods in Medieval and Renaissance Studies: 1. Research as Inquiry 2. Information Creation as a Process 3. Scholarship as Conversation 4. Searching as Strategic Exploration We reached these objectives by foregrounding period primary sources in richly scaffolded term-long research projects. Students were invited to radically slow processes of inquiry (Objective 1) in order to reflect critically on how they were forming a representation of each object of study (Objective 2). They shared their growing expertise in a series of presentations that deliberately forestalled the performance of mastery to foster, instead, curiosity both about their object and constructive feedback to their treatment of it (Objective 3). After initial intensive study of and reflection on their primary source in Special Collections, students were introduced to the library’s open stacks—which none had previously entered (not least owing to multiple years of COVID-related online learning). With the objective of teaching how and why to explore physical holdings as well as the digital resources within easier reach, they were invited to develop and refine search strategies to locate relevant, credible secondary sources— which had the added benefit of helping them learn the affordances of the library’s new catalogue (Objective 4).
    Recipient of the MLA-EBSCO Collaboration for Information Literacy Prize, given for coursework developed in collaboration between department faculty members and academic librarians in literature, language, or related disciplines. The award recognizes successful integration of the disciplinary objectives of the course with learning objectives in information literacy.
    Last Updated:
    3 months ago


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