Which came first: The whale or the egg?
For a short information literacy session that introduces the strengths and limitations of discovery tools, present students with a written question that contains ambiguity and lacks context. Then ask them to find the answers by searching library systems without the aid of additional human interaction. Wrap up the experience—designed to draw out common frustrations—with a review of best practices when first investigating an information need. This lesson is particularly useful for helping both ESL and non-ESL students examine the role of language and vocabulary in describing information needs and in expanding and narrowing search.