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Library Instruction Guidelines


Library instruction is an important service that supports the teaching mission of the college, promotes lifelong learning and enhances critical thinking and information literacy skills.

The goal of each instruction session is to help students learn how to successfully navigate and use the library's resources. Library instruction classes incorporate the demonstration of print and electronic research materials, evaluation of sources and hands-on practice. Walk-in tours of the library can also be scheduled. These tours direct students to the location of service areas and specific collections in the library.

The librarians are committed to promoting the library's philosophy of service through effective and innovative library instruction. These guidelines support the success of that effort.


  1. Instruction classes should be scheduled early in the semester in order to ensure that needed times can be accommodated.
  2. Classes are scheduled through the Library Instruction Request Form. Librarians make every reasonable effort to accommodate library instruction requests; however, the library schedule may prevent instruction on a specific day or time or with a specific librarian.
  3. A request for an instruction class should be made at least 48 hours in advance. Instruction classes which involve creation of new learning materials or a web page should be scheduled at least one week in advance. This provides time for the librarian to prepare materials and communicate with you about students' needs and your teaching goals.
  4. The instruction session should correspond with a specific assignment to which students have already been introduced. The library session is more successful when students know what is expected of them ahead of time.
  5. A copy of the assignment should be sent to the librarian before the session. This will help with preparation for the class and will enable all reference librarians to help students when they come to the desk for assistance.
  6. When physical library resources are needed for the class, the class should be scheduled to be held in the library.
  7. Two 50-100 minute sessions usually provide better retention and learning than a single instructional session. An additional class should be scheduled to cover MLA or APA citation formats.
  8. After a formal instruction session, you may want to bring students to the library to complete their research during class time. Notify the reference desk in advance so that we can ensure that your visit does not overlap with a previously scheduled class. Space in the reference area and access at the terminals is limited.
  9. If an instruction class must be cancelled, the class will be scheduled for the next available time with the next available reference librarian.
  10. The librarians welcome your participation in the library instruction class. Your presence builds an important bridge between the classroom and the library. Your presence also provides a common frame of reference in understanding what students know of library resources.
  11. The librarians will gladly assist faculty who want to create or update their library assignments.
  12. The library will acquire, within reason, resources needed for library assignments that support the course curriculum, information literacy and life-long learning.

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