Skip to Main Content

AI in the Library: Information Literacy and Artificial Intelligence Tools

AI and Information Literacy

The ACRL Framework and MCC's Information Literacy General Education Goal

The Framework

The Framework for Information Literacy is set of 6 interconnected frames that views information literacy as threshold concepts from which students can develop their information literacy abilities.

  1. Authority is Constructed and Contextual
  2. Information Creation as a Process
  3. Information Has Value
  4. Research as Inquiry
  5. Scholarship as Conversation
  6. Searching as Strategic Exploration

Information Literacy

"To be information literate, a person must be able to recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and use effectively the needed information" (American Library Association).

This definition is the hallmark of MCC's Information Literacy general education goal. It's a definition that the MCC Library uses as the foundation of our Information Literacy program. The ACRL Framework guides our information literacy instruction as we help our students:

  • Understand how and why information is produced.
  • Match their information need with the appropriate format of information.
  • Value the expertise of the authors whose sources they are citing, while recognizing that some voices or perspectives may not be present in their area of research.
  • Reflect on the information-seeking process and be persistent in their searches.
  • Recognize that they are part of a larger group of voices in their research area and understand the responsibilities that go with it.

The information landscape is changing rapidly, and how students access information is a part of that change. We see AI as another search tool students can use to support their research goals as they work towards becoming information literate.

Generative AI vs Research Assistant AI Tools








How AI Tools Can Support Information Literacy

Generative AI tools like ChatGPT can help students narrow their research topics or as a tool to locate keywords. Research Assistant AI tools like Research Rabbit and Consensus can help students more easily see connections between their research topic and similar existing research, which can lead them to sources and perspectives that they might not have encountered otherwise. A tool like Semantic Scholar highlights frequently cited authors, which can help students identify experts in the field "while remaining skeptical of the systems that have elevated that authority and the information created by it" (ACRL Framework, Authority is Constructed and Contextual, p. 12)

Connecting AI Tools to the ACRL Framework

We've identified some AI tools that can support students' research and help them make connections between the tools and the concepts described in the Framework. Use the yellow tabs on the left to learn more about them.