Keep Calm and Read Laterally! A Bite-sized Information Literacy Programme at Singapore Management University Libraries

By Li Zhenyan


Librarians at Singapore Management University (SMU) Libraries developed an information literacy programme, titled Keep Calm and Read Laterally! as part of the Libraries’ flagship Bite-Sized Workshop Series. The initiative aimed to further the digital competence of students through advocating critical and effective engagement with digital information. The workshop was highly interactive, incorporating problem-based learning and hands-on group activities, and was split into two parts. The first part helped learners to understand what they read and what types of resources they could use to address various information needs, while the second part guided learners to assess digital information leveraging lateral reading techniques and to develop a better understanding towards the credibility of the information being evaluated. This article further discusses several observations from the past two runs of the workshop and presents the gathered participant feedback, which offers valuable insights for continuous improvement. Additionally, the author invites fellow colleagues to exchange ideas and share their best practices in lateral reading instruction.

Keywords: Information and Digital Literacies, Lateral Reading, Problem-based Learning, Critical Assessment of Digital Information, Fact-checking