The Role of Academic Libraries in an Era of Fake News, Alternative Facts, and Information Overload


This session was presented at the CNI Spring 2017 Membership Meeting

Recent news reports of large segments of the population falling for fake news stories came as no surprise to academic librarians who have spent years watching students struggle with the challenges of discovering, internalizing, evaluating, and applying credible information. After all, making sense of information has always been hard, and people today are confronted with the most complex and crowded information landscape in human history. This hot-button presentation focuses on what the role of academic libraries should be in helping individuals make sense of a world bursting at the seams with information—some of it completely unreliable. Reflecting on our history of promoting information literacy, librarians and other information professionals need to ask ourselves which instructional approaches we should keep, which we need to change, and how we might use technology to improve our success in helping students become information-literate scholars and citizens.

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