Information literacy education and instruction in academic libraries and LIS schools in institutions of higher education in South Africa

  • Glenrose Velile Jiyane University of South Africa, Department of Information Science
  • Omwoyo Bosire Onyancha University of South Africa, Department of Information Science
Keywords: Academic libraries, Information literacy, information skills, technological skills, LIS schools, South Africa


Information literacy (IL) is increasingly becoming one of the core subjects in many LIS schools curricula today. It is universally considered one of the effective means through which ones information skills are developed, and more especially at Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). The aim of this study is to explore the availability and implementation of information literacy programmes in South Africa, with special reference to LIS schools/departments and academic libraries. The study is largely informed by a literature review of scholarly journal articles, books and Internet sources and a survey involving LIS schools/departments and academic libraries in South Africa. Results indicate that most LIS schools and academic libraries provide IL programmes; the IL programmes are known by different titles/names; there are common as well as uncommon topics offered to students; the IL programme is largely offered to first year students by qualified LIS professionals; the purpose of offering IL programmes is generally to enable students to access, select and utilise resources effectively; the challenges of IL provision include lack of resources (e.g. staff, funds and e-laboratories) and support; and the librarys and LIS departments community engagement as far as IL provision is concerned is minimal. Several recommendations towards the improvement of IL delivery by LIS departments and academic libraries in South Africa are made.
Research Articles