A Developmental View of Information Literacy

Designer Librarian

How do students become information literate? That’s a question I have asked myself many times. I’m particularly interested in the relationship between cognitive development and information literacy learning.

Kitchener and King’s Reflective Judgment Model is one way to view information literacy from a developmental perspective. Take a look below:

The 7 Stages of Reflective Judgment 
Stage 1 Knowledge is absolute and self-evident. “I know what I have seen”
Stage 2 Knowledge is certain, can be obtained through direct observation or authorities. “If it is on the news, it has to be true.”
Stage 3 Knowledge can be temporarily uncertain. Absolute certainty is obtained through authorities. “When there is evidence that people can give to convince everybody one way or another, then it will be knowledge; until then, it’s just a guess.”
Stage 4 Knowledge is permanently uncertain and idiosyncratic. “I’d be more inclined to believe evolution if they had proof.  It’s…

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