Web 2.0 Technology as a Teaching Tool

Web 2.0 Technology as a Teaching Tool

Lara Skelly (University of Cape Town Libraries, South Africa), Jen Eidelman (University of Cape Town Libraries, South Africa) and Peter Underwood (University of Cape Town, South Africa)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-1912-8.ch010


In response to two different pedagogical challenges, namely delivering varied library instruction to a big first year class and delivering a focused library instruction to a varied group, librarians at an academic institution created online guides. These guides, built in LibGuides with many Web 2.0 tools included, effectively delivered the desired instructional service. This chapter outlines the details of the challenge, the steps taken to create the guide, and the use of the guide and possible future uses.
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Purpose 2: An Undergraduate Learning Tool

The second need was to provide a reference service to a large first-year class that needed to submit two essays as part of the curriculum. These 1000 students had to include some journal articles and other reputable sources in their essays. The initial essay was, for the most of them, their first introduction to library resources and using the library in general. This meant that they all needed instruction on how to use the library and access the information that they required.

In the past, the librarians took a reactive stance, waiting for the students to come and ask the librarians for what they needed for their essay. This led to 1000 student all coming into the library a week before their essay was due, and asking the same questions which the librarians had to answer over and over again. This was frustrating to the students, and the librarians would become impatient. By coming into the library to ask the librarians for help, these students were making certain parts of the library very busy. This would bother other users working in that area. A more proactive strategy was needed.

One option was to go into the classroom to give a library instruction lecture. However, from empirical evidence, this would not work. Not all students attend the lecture. Library lectures are often considered simplistic and the students do not take notes. This resulted in more questions, as the students not only had the questions they had before the lecture, but they also had questions on what they half remembered from the lecture.

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