Copyright: Qualms and Content Management Systems

Copyright Qualms

The information presented in Module 4 of ETL503 on copyright (Combes, Fitzgerald, & Croft, 2018) was mostly a review for me. It did however, raise some qualms for me as I browsed through material on the Smartcopy website. Questions regarding the showing of films to students, especially for recreational purposes like for wet weather lunch, and the manner in which you do that made me realise that some of my habits as a teacher may not fall under best practices. While I will endeavour to find out whether the schools I work at are subscribed to the Co-Curricular license (National Copyright Unit, n.d.b, paras. 4 – 12), it is difficult as a casual teacher to know this information when you are suddenly allocated to a wet weather duty. With different technological provision in different schools, it can also become confusing to figure out how to ethically fulfil your duties with the technology available.

Content Management Systems

I found the reading on Content Management Systems in Schools (National Copyright Unit, n.d.a) to be quite interesting. The notion that copyright material will be judged to be reloaded (and if applicable, a new fee charged) annually if left on the system. That is a good motivation for weeding the virtual collection!


Combes, B., Fitzgerald, L.,& Croft, T. (2018). Copyright. In Legal and ethical issues on collections [ETL503 Modules: Module Four]. Retrieved from Charles Sturt University website:

National Copyright Unit. (n.d.a). Copyright implications of content management systems: schools. In Smartcopying. Retrieved May 31, 2018 from

National Copyright Unit. (n.d.b). Playing films, television and radio in schools. In Smartcopying. Retrieved May 31, 2018 from

Reflection on reflecting

I have recently finished my final assessment tasks for both ETL401 and ETL503, my first two subjects in the MEdTL course. Both subjects mentioned the need to maintain a reflective journal throughout the subject on our blogs. However, very little guidance was given on how to go about doing so. Having completed the reflection tasks in each final assessment, I wish that I had done more. I can see how more frequent, small reflections on readings and on each topic would have given me more to comment on in the reflection. If in the final subject we need to reflect on our growth throughout the journey, I see a gap in my record of experiences for this first session.

I will set a goal for next term to not only respond to module-based prompts in my blog (and separate them rather than aggregating them in collections as I did sometimes in this session) but also create weekly reflections and overall module-end reflections. Hopefully that will set me up with more to glean from for my end-of-session reflective tasks.

ETL401 Assessment 3 Part C: Reflective Practice

Note: This post was edited on 22/6/2018 to add this line and the “continue reading” button below.

At the outset of this subject, my perception of the role of the teacher librarian (TL) was based on my experience as a school teacher. It was similar to the view that I thought school teachers would generally have in my first official blog post for the course. Basically, I was aware that they managed the library collection and that they taught classes. Most of my experience with library programs in schools involved TLs who taught classes on a release-from-face-to-face (RFF) basis, so my understanding of what their teaching role looked like was based largely on my experiences as the classroom teacher receiving RFF. I had experienced collaboration, but it was mainly in the form of the TL working together with teachers on each stage to help resource English, History and Geography units and to co-ordinate her RFF units with those teaching programs. While I felt myself drawn towards the philosophies and pedagogies of inquiry-based teaching and learning, I did not see any particular difference in the role of the TL in that area as compared to any other teacher. I had never given much thought to information literacy and was aware of neither the overlap nor the differences between information literacy models and inquiry learning pedagogies.

What a difference twelve weeks can make! This subject has expanded my understanding of the multi-faceted role of the TL, somewhat overwhelmingly as I shared in paragraphs four and five of this blog post. I have also learned much about information literacy and the role TLs can have in increasing student information literacy levels, especially through inquiry learning.

Continue reading “ETL401 Assessment 3 Part C: Reflective Practice”

Reflections on Collections – ETL503 Assessment 2 Part B

In this subject I have learned that establishing balance in a collection requires consideration of the school context. It also entails balancing content considerations, such as the distribution between fiction and non-fiction, the representation of various subject areas, topics, and diverse backgrounds. Finally, it involves balancing technical matters such as format types (considering student preferences, as well as convenience and price, as discussed on Forum 1.1 (Simon, 2018a)), methods of supply and acquisition, and accessibility by people with various disabilities.

My developing understanding of the selection process highlighted the importance of having clear, documented selection criteria and informative and reliable selection aids to guide that process. For example, to ensure that local and national curriculum requirements are considered, selection criteria should be based on existing recommendations, such as those from the Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA) Schools and Victorian Catholic Teacher Librarians (2018). These should be modified to take into account specific school context and priorities, perhaps via a library committee with representation including executive, faculty, students and even parents (NSW Department of Education, 2015, p. 5). Electronic resources raise additional selection issues, most notably: acceptable licensing terms, preferences for access vs ownership, accessibility preferences and steps to ensure compliance with applicable copyright restrictions (Gregory, 2011). Continue reading “Reflections on Collections – ETL503 Assessment 2 Part B”

Accession, acquisition and budgeting out of context

Module 3 in ETL503 is all about acquisition, accession and budgeting. While it was somewhat interesting to go through the readings and suggestions and note the types of thinking and planning that will be necessary as a TL, it is incredibly difficult to apply out of context. The practical application questions frequently referenced “your school” and “your collection”. As a student who is currently NOT working as a TL, just aspiring to the role in the future, I found this quite difficult. I am thankful that the final assessment is situated in a shared external context – annotating an existing policy for a school. I think it would be beneficial for students in my position if some of the exercises gave a case-study type exercise. These could always have an either/or option for applying within your own context if you are currently employed as a TL.

For the moment, I am mainly filing the information away in my brain (and saving the module pdfs to my computer) for future reference when I have a context in which to apply it.

Arguments for a whole school approach to information literacy and inquiry

Mandy Lupton (2014) and Karen Bonnano (2014) are quite effective at showing that inquiry and critical thinking are intended to be part of Australian education through their incorporation in the Australian Curriculum. Bonnano also makes a good argument for how those skills, competencies and processes can be mapped to an inquiry model such as Guided Inquiry. These are key factors in the argument for schools to embrace and incorporate inquiry learning and information literacy models. They do not, however, specifically address why it is beneficial to institute a single information literacy model or learning process throughout the school. Interviews with students at the Stonefields School in New Zealand demonstrated to me the power of using a consistent terminology and process across the learning of the school. In the video posted by Sarah Martin (2012) you can see that the use of a common terminology enables students across the span of ages and levels to verbalise their experience of the learning process. Some of the children, especially the younger ones, seem to just be parroting phrases they have memorised. However, the in-depth interview with older students in Treadwell’s (2013) video shows that the terminology and processes are being internalised and transferred to areas of learning even beyond the inquiry (or “Breakthrough”) projects. Seeing the results of a single learning process and shared terminology being applied across a school is what convinced me that this is a good idea and inspired me to advocate for it at any school where I work in a substantial role.


Bonanno, K. (2014) F-10 inquiry skills scope and sequence, and F-10 core skills and tools. Retrieved May 3, 2018 from
Lupton, M.(2014) Inquiry skills in the Australian Curriculum. Access, 6(November), 8-29.
Martin, S. 2012. Stonefields School building learning capacity [Video file]. Retrieved May 3, 2018 from
Treadwell, M. 2013. Stonefields2 [Video file]. Retrieved May 3, 2018 from

Reflections on information literacy – complexity, context and transfer

I am cross-posting this from the Module 5.2 forum on ETL401. There was a separate task for blog reflection in the section, but it was about what you could apply to your TL role at school and that is not relevant for me yet.

I think the main takeaway I got from the readings was the need to recognise and engage with the complexity of the concept of information literacy. We need to go beyond a mechanistic skill-based vision to encompass the contextual and social nature of the information landscape and the literacy needed to navigate it effectively – without abandoning the skills and competencies involved in that process. Although I am not certain that I have completely understood or been convinced by the relational frame for viewing information literacy; I was captured by the point in Bruce, Edwards and Lupton’s “Six frames for information literacy” (2006) article that there are multiple valid perspectives that can and should inform our understanding and teaching of information literacy. Being the benefits and validity of a new perspective does not mean you have to completely abandon everything from your previous perspective.

The issues that I have the most difficulty reconciling and struggle with the implications of are the difficulty of assessing – especially in a way that will be recognised as a standard across an educational system – of the more social, relational and contextual aspects of information literacy. How do we promote the development of information literacy skills that truly give learners the capacity to learn how to learn and transfer skills and competencies from one context to another. And how do we check to see whether that has happened successfully? These are the questions I hope to find answers to on MY learning journey.


Bruce, C., Edwards, C., & Lupton, M. (2006). Six frames for information literacy education: A conceptual framework for interpreting the relationships between theory and practice. ITALICS, 5(1), 1-18. Retrieved from

Musings on the socio-cultural approach – how do you scale up successfully?

I have just finished the essential readings for the section on the Socio-Cultural Approach to Information Literacy:

Read (essential)

Lloyd, A. (2007). Recasting information literacy as sociocultural practice: Implications for library and information science researchers. Information Research, 12(4).
Farrell ,R. & Badke, W. (2015). Situating information literacy in the disciplines: A practical and systematic approach for academic librarians. Reference Services Review, 43(2). CSU Library.
Talja, S. & Lloyd, A. (2010). Integrating theories of learning, literacies and information practices. In Talja, S. & Lloyd, A. (2010). Practising information literacy: Bringing theories of learning, practice and information literacy together. Wagga Wagga, NSW: Centre for Information Studies. pp. ix-xviii.

While I feel a pull towards the socio-cultural and constructivist philosophies and pedagogies, I have problems resolving some philosophical and practical considerations. I think one of my main philosophical objections with the constructivist and socio-cultural approaches are their sidelining or at least seeming repudiation of explicit instruction. I was encouraged recently by watching a John Hattie video clip that reminded me that I can embrace elements of theses approaches without abandoning elements of other approaches that resonate with my experience.

My main practical concern is how do we get there and how do we know if we have succeeded? How can the structure of public education change to incorporate this pedagogical philosophy and how can we assess socio-cultural teaching and learning on a large scale in an authentic way? For, while I think that different pedagogical philosophies can be integrated, I do not believe it is fair or effective to conduct the business of teaching and learning mainly under one pedagogical approach and then assess it according to methods developed to be consistent with another. That leads to my mixed emotions on watching a video clip from The Project which featured politicians and educational reformers discussing reforming Australian education to a more individualised learning structure that develops 21st century competencies – but still seemed to think the gains from that switch could be assessed using measures such as NAPLAN and PISA. (Though, to be fair, assessment was not really broached simply implied when lamenting Australia’s fall in global rankings.)

Does anyone have any good ideas or resources regarding assessment of socio-culturally situated teaching and learning that can be used on a national scale?

Back To Top
Skip to toolbar