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 Information Power

Page history last edited by Jacque E. Peterson 10 years, 11 months ago

As a result of significant changes within education during the 1980s and of the effect of expanded access to new sources of information, AASL and AECT (see below) developed and published in 1988, a document designed to aid local professionals in decision-making, planning and evaluating school library media programs. It became the standard by which school districts and individual schools measured themselves against the very best media programs nationally. The 1988 Information Power: Guidelines for School Library Media Programs has since been revised to reflect the increasing movement from providing access to resources to focusing on student learning and outcomes. The goal is to empower students with the skills necessary to become lifelong learners. The next publication, Information Power: Building Partnerships for Learning was published in 1998.  The Information Power precepts described below have been augmented by a 2007 publication, Standards for 21st-Century Learners, also from AASL.


In both Information Power publications, the vision has remained the same:


The mission of the library media program is to ensure that students and staff are effective users of ideas and information.


This mission is accomplished:


  • by providing intellectual and physical access to materials in all formats,
  • by providing instruction to foster competence and stimulate interest in reading, viewing, and using information and ideas,
  • by working with other educators to design learning strategies to meet the needs of individual students.


Information Power: Building Partnerships for Learning is built upon a set of nine information literacy standards designed to guide and support library media specialists’ efforts in the three major areas:


  • Learning and teaching
  • Information access
  • Program administration




  • to provide intellectual access to information through systematic learning activities which develop cognitive strategies for selecting, retrieving, analyzing, evaluating, synthesizing, and creating information at all age levels and in all curriculum content areas.
  • to provide physical access to information through (a) a carefully selected and systematically organized collection of diverse learning resources, representing a wide range of subjects, levels of difficulty, communication formats, and technological delivery systems; (b) access to information and materials outside the library media center and the school building through such mechanisms as interlibrary loan, networking and other cooperative agreements, and online searching of databases; and (c) providing instruction in the operation of equipment necessary to use the information in any format
  • to provide learning experiences that encourage users to become discriminating consumers and skilled creators of information through introduction to the full range of communications media and use of the new and emerging information technologies
  • to provide leadership, instruction, and consulting assistance in the use of instructional and information technology and the use of sound instructional design principles
  • to provide resources and activities that contribute to lifelong learning, while accommodating a wide range of differences in teaching and learning styles and in instructional methods, interests, and capacities
  • to provide a facility that functions as the information center of the school, as a locus for integrated, interdisciplinary, intergrade, and school-wide learning activities
  • to provide resources and learning activities that represent a diversity of experiences, opinions, social and cultural perspectives, supporting the concept that intellectual freedom and access to information are prerequisite to effective and responsible citizenship in a democracy.

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