This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Contact to report an issue.

Today, I had the opportunity to travel to Jackson Library at UNC-Greensboro to attend a NCLA Bibliographic Instruction workshop titled, “Student Engagement and Active Learning.” The presenters were Jenny Dale and Amy Harris, both UNC-G librarians. Jenny kicked off the day with introductions and a think-pair-share exercise asking, “What make a good presenter?” The librarians present were involved in instruction with their respective institutions which ranged from high schools to universities as far away as East Carolina. As you can imagine, the group eagerly participated in the discussions and activities.

This workshop reminded me of what an incredible job I have and what a wonderful opportunity our students have with our LIB100 and 200 courses. I was the only one in the group teaching a for credit course; most of the discussions centered around motivating students in one shot sessions (incentives, positive feedback, competition, and fun).

Jenny presented John Keller’s Motivational Design model which includes attention, relevance, confidence. and satisfaction. She also talked about Jacobson and Xu’s model which says that there are three elements to successfully motivating students: enthusiasm, clarity, and interaction. Perhaps the most interesting nugget of learning came when she showed a graphic of a “Learning Pyramid” that shows a scale that says that students only retain 5% of lectures, 10% of what they read (four other levels between), and 90% of what they teach others. Here’s the interesting fact: there is no research out there to back these claims!

After lunch, we discussed practical ideas for active learning activities. My favorite was UNC-G’s human citation activity where they get volunteers to come to the front and they give them pieces of a citation to hold. The audience tells the people where to stand to put the citation in the correct APA or MLA citation style order. Another interesting activity was Gardner Webb’s book truck rodeo where they take book trucks and put about 12 books on each truck. The students are divided in small groups and the team who gets the books in correct LC order first wins candy!

I spent a good portion of the afternoon trying to help a new librarian at St. Augustine’s plan how to structure her one shot sessions for the freshmen seminar classes in the spring. We are so fortunate to have so much time with our LIB100 students!

I believe the greatest value of my trip to Greensboro was simply getting to meet other instruction librarians from across the state. It was a good day, but I’m glad to be back home at Wake Forest!