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FYS Faculty Resources: Welcome

This guide focuses on information literacy, first year seminars and library resources available for faculty teaching at the University of Richmond.

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Citation Study @ UR

How Students Engage with Scholarly Sources (VLA Presentation, Sept. 2013). An overview of the National Citation Project and plans for UR liaison librarians' local citation study, beginning Fall 2013 with FYS research.

Library Research Sessions - Information Literacy @ UR


First-Year Seminars (FYS) provide entering students the excitement of engaged learning through a diverse array of seminar topics.  With small classes, a variety of topics, and close contact with faculty, First-Year Seminars offer a hands-on introduction to academic inquiry. More than 30 seminar topics cover a wide range of interests, from bioethics and math, to art history and English.

All seminars provide opportunities for critical reading and thinking and establish a foundation for effective written and oral communications skills, information literacy, and library research skills.

All FYS Seminars have the same five common goals:

  1. expand and deepen students' understanding of the world and of themselves
  2. enhance students’ ability to read and think critically
  3. enhance students’ ability to communicate effectively, in writing, speech, and other appropriate forms
  4. develop the fundamentals of information literacy and library research
  5. provide the opportunity for students to work closely with a faculty member

Library Research Instruction (Goal #4):

The librarians at Boatwright Library are committed to providing information literacy and library research instruction for all students.  To fulfill this in the first year seminars, students will:

  • attend an information literacy/library research session as part of their FYS which will incorporate the research goals listed.
  • have incorporated into their FYS, at least one session of information literacy/library research - building on the information covered in the library research session and tied specifically to the subject matter of the course. A few options could be a second library session or an appointment with their personal librarian.
  • complete at least one assignment in their FYS requiring library and/or research beyond their core texts.

Information Literacy/Library Research Goals and Outcomes for First Year Seminar Library Labs:

The overall goals of the FYS Library Research Sessions are to introduce students to fundamental library resources and services, while developing students' sense of critical inquiry in the context of library research.  Fundamental research competencies acquired during their first year will help students identify information resources for course assignments, as well as begin to develop skills for research inquiry within the academic community.  This tiered approach provides students with a foundation to conduct more developed and complex research throughout their General Education and Upper Level courses, as well as meet faculty expectations for research assignments throughout the curriculum. 

Librarians at the University of Richmond use a tiered research instruction approach based on Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives of lower-and higher-order thinking and competency skills, as well as the research of Kenneth Burke (The Philosophy of Literary Form, 110-111) and Gerald Graff & Cathy Birkenstein (They Say/I Say), encouraging students to think about research and writing as joining the academic conversation. 

Achievement of Outcomes:  First-year students arrive with a range of experiences with library resources, and liaison librarians provide library research sessions to introduce academic research strategies and resources to all first-year students, focusing on the unique scholarly collections at the University of Richmond. Library instruction sessions also offer all students, especially those with little previous exposure to library research and resources, the opportunity to think about information needs and appropriate resources beginning with their first UR classes. Librarians and FYS faculty work together to plan overall program assessment for Goal #4.

Head, Research & Instruction

Carol Wittig

Religious Studies, Philosophy & Journalism
184, Research & Collaborative Area
Boatwright Library
University of Richmond
28 Westhampton Way
Richmond, VA 23173
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