INA – Rend Lake College Reference Librarian Beth Mandrell was one of only 66 professionals across the country chosen to participate in the Association of College and Research Libraries’ Immersion Program.
The program was held July 13-18 on the campus at Illinois State University in Normal. According to the Institute for Information Literacy Web site, “Immersion” provides instruction librarians with the opportunity to work intensively for four-and-a-half days on all aspects of information literacy.
Mandrell explained that her four days were spent learning more about how library instruction has changed, how to better define information literacy, different ways people learn and how to use voice, body language and attitude to become an authentic teacher.
She said other topics were how outcomes can improve the student learning experience, incorporating information literacy assessments into course assignments, learning theories and styles, and student-centered learning.
“The sessions were taught in various learning styles but many were hands-on, get up and move around type activities so it was very engaging, interesting and entertaining,” Mandrell said. “I feel that I came away from Immersion with a better understanding of teaching students how to find information, evaluate it, and use it. I would encourage anyone who teaches to take advantage of this opportunity.”
Mandrell has worked at RLC since September of 1999. She is an RLC alumnae, holds a bachelor’s degree from Greenville College and was the recipient of RLC’s Outstanding Staff Award in 2005. She lives in Mulkeytown with her husband, Vernon. They have three grown children – Kara, Aaron and Leah.