Experiential learning, authority, cognitive authority, ACRL Framework, Authority is Constructed and Contextual, sociology, partnership, collaboration

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Innovative Practice


In this innovative project, a social sciences librarian partnered with a sociology professor to embed the “Authority is Constructed and Contextual” frame into an upper-division sociology of poverty course. Students in this course participated in an experiential learning project, collaborating with local children on a participatory photo mapping project to document the children’s neighborhood. By working directly with community members in this field experience, the students gained an understanding of the differences between scholarly authority and community authority and what can be learned about poverty from each type of source. Engagement with a local community provides students with a direct understanding of the contextual nature of cognitive authority and can be replicated in a variety of settings.



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Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.