In my previous post, I shared Dinah Warren’s reflection on setting up the Tertiary Prep Programme for Waimea College. In this post, Alison McIntyre shares the University of Canterbury’s perspective on our collaboration.
University of Canterbury (UC) librarians were delighted to be involved in a 3-way partnership with Dinah Warren and Senga White to pilot a Tertiary Preparation programme for year 13 Waimea College students. In line with our UC vision “people prepared to make a difference -Tangata tū, Tangata ora” we were keen to learn about students’ experience at high school so that we could be better prepared to support their transition to our university. In return, we committed to providing content and a university perspective for the Waimea College programme.
UC Library visited the school to meet with staff and for face to face workshops with students. We also contributed a video and, lesson plans and teaching resources for specific components of the programme. Dinah, with support from Senga, designed the programme and delivered all except the workshops on the day of our visit, and the first session, which Senga delivered during her visit to Nelson.
We were interested in exploring how UC Library information literacy programmes might be scaled to provide such services to high schools. This pilot was an opportunity to work together with Waimea College to better understand the information literacy problem we were trying to solve and to experiment with content and methods for delivery. Dinah’s vision and leadership of the project were critical to the collaboration. It took open and honest communication to ensure that the students’ interests were kept at the core of the work.
My impression is that the Waimea College Library and Information service has a lot in common with the UC library service. When we visited the school it was clear that the library was a popular place for students to meet, that the librarians were friendly and knowledgeable and that library instruction was embedded in the academic programme. Two things stood out as obvious differences that require navigation by students in transition from high school to university, one was simply the scale, and two the types of information resources available to students specifically access to scholarly journals.
UC Library will continue to collaborate with Senga as a means for supporting school librarians in their work with students intending to enrol in tertiary education. We have also committed to working with Dinah on a follow-up project to incorporate learning from this year’s pilot to further develop the Waimea College tertiary transition programme. We’re convinced that librarians working together across sectors can make a difference to ease the transition from high school to university.