Skip to Main Content

Library Instruction


This guide is intended to introduce faculty to the various instructional support services offered by the OWU Libraries. Below, you will find a brief write-up of how our librarians approach teaching and the core skills we seek to impart, while to the left you will find tabs to direct you to more concrete examples of teaching, activities, and online resources we can provide, as well as contact information for your subject area's librarian.

We look forward to working with you!

What We Teach

We are, first and foremost, a teaching library. This means that we are dedicated to actively supporting OWU’s curriculum and the research needs of our students and faculty. We train individuals to be information literate, people who can identify specific information needs, select appropriate sources to fulfill those needs, evaluate those sources, and then ethically use the information they have attained.

These skills are informed by the ACRL Framework of Information Literacy, and offer students academically, professionally, and personally valuable techniques. 

As a teaching library, we support OWU’s core Mission in its “attempts to develop in its students qualities of intellect and character that will be useful no matter what they choose to do in later life.” That is a rich intellectual tradition that we support by helping students learn to navigate the complex modern information ecosystem and become lifelong learners.

We believe that information literacy is a vital skill that supports, to borrow from OWU’s mission one last time, the free pursuit of truth in “the transmission, extension, and discovery of knowledge.”

How We Teach

The OWU Libraries are asked to teach sessions across the OWU curriculum. Because of this, we approach teaching with an interdisciplinary mindset. While focusing on the subjects and methods of each course we visit, the Public Services Librarians also support students in integrating the research strategies and knowledge acquired across their OWU experience.

We believe that our role in teaching is to assist students in recognizing the diversity of culture, thought, experience, and standards that go into the production and use of information.

We strive to critically engage students not only in the mechanics of the research process, but to push them to examine issues of bias, authority, and privilege, and the way those concepts manifest differently depending on both the subject area and their information needs.

We want students to be active participants in their own learning while they struggle with difficult questions about information systems. Through our instruction, students will learn to understand, work with, and challenge the systemic power structures that underlie publishing in all its aspects.

Library Instruction Learning Objectives

The OWU Libraries primarily teaches information literacy skills in service of the specific needs of the courses to which we have been invited. We collaborate with the instructors of each class to design a session that blends the learning objectives of the course itself with those of the library’s mission to help students better understand information.

The OWU Libraries have consulted the OWU Graduate Capabilities and the ACRL Information Literacy Framework when designing these learning objectives. Not every objective listed below will be touched upon in every class, but it is our goal that students have a strong foundation in all of these areas by the time they leave OWU.

Students will be able to:

  • recognize expertise, while maintaining skepticism over the inherent biases of the power systems that categorize expertise. 

  • determine their information needs and which type of information source meets their needs. 

  • use sources ethically, while recognizing the limits of the information creation process to value all voices equally. 

  • articulate their information needs with questions in varying levels of complexity. 

  • incorporate multiple perspectives while adding their own voice to the scholarly conversation in their discipline. 

  • employ complex and varied search methods, whereby they accept that a good search will include “failed” searches and will persist to further explore their questions. 

Instruction Librarians




Holly Birk

Public Services Librarian

740-368-3207  | 

                Holly Birk


  • Biological Sciences
  • Chemistry
  • Environment & Sustainability
  • Health & Human Kinetics
  • Mathematics & Computer Science
  • Neuroscience
  • Physics & Astronomy
  • Psychology

Calvin Cleary 

Public Services Librarian

740-368-3237  |

                Calvin Cleary


  • Education
  • English
  • History
  • Performing Arts
  • World Languages

Liz Lang

Public Services Librarian



  • Economics & Business
  • Fine Arts
  • Journalism and Communication
  • Philosophy and Religion
  • Politics and Government
  • Sociology & Anthropology
  • Africana, Gender & Identity Studies

 Stacy Chaney-Blakenship

Digital Initiatives Librarian and

Curator of the OWU Historical Collection

740-368-3288  |