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Friday, July 20 • 1:30pm - 2:30pm
What We Talk About When We Talk About Bias

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"Bias" is often invoked in the context of information literacy, namely that something is or is not "biased". This approach does little to communicate to students that bias is a complicated concept and that the factors that determine bias are varied and contextual.

With reference to the ACRL frame "Authority is Constructed and Contextual" this presentation will describe ways in which the common understanding and use of the term bias is problematic and limiting for our students as they seek to navigate a complex information landscape. In particular it will highlight work related to the study of bias from fields beyond librarianship such as philosophy and psychology in order to provide attendees with insight into how other areas of academia have worked to expand our collective understanding of the different dimensions of this topic. In doing so, attendees will have the opportunity to think critically about the ways in which their conceptions of bias compare and contrast with common modes of understanding bias as articulated in other areas of academia.

In this session attendees will consider how a broader, more nuanced approach to teaching the concept of bias could be applied in their instruction sessions. The presentation will include specific strategies for advancing students understanding of various types of bias relevant to information literacy, which include anchoring bias and confirmation bias. This presentation will focus on bias as it applies not just to information sources but also as it relates to the disposition within the "Authority is Constructed and Contextual" frame that references the responsibility that librarians have to support students in gaining "a self-awareness of their own biases and worldview".


Ryne Leuzinger

Research and Instruction Librarian, CSU Monterey Bay

Friday July 20, 2018 1:30pm - 2:30pm MDT
University Center Ballroom West