More students gain from NLB's information literacy programme

SINGAPORE - More students have been trained in better handling information when surfing the net and conducting research online, through an information literacy programme by the National Library Board (NLB).

The number of students who participated in Source-Understand-Research-Evaluate, or S.U.R.E Club, rose from 260 in 2013 when it was launched, to 633 last year, the NLB said on Thursday.

The NLB started the club in response to students' increasing reliance on the Internet for information and the "explosion of social media", where information was often condensed to bite-sized chunks and spread rapidly, said NLB deputy director of engagement Wan Wee Pin.

The NLB also added a checklist to the programme, to help teachers assess and track students' progress.

Students have to complete 10 out of 14 information literacy-related tasks on the S.U.R.E Specialist Task List within a year, to get a certificate of completion and a pin badge. The tasks range from evaluating the credibility of websites to gathering information using library research tools.

Under this programme, the NLB also holds competitions recognised by the Ministry of Education. Winners of these competitions stand to gain points for their co-curricula activities (CCA), which can give them a better chance of entering the junior college or polytechnic of their choice.

Students who achieve the "excellent" band for CCA stand to deduct two bonus points from the GCE 'O' Level results for entry to junior college or polytechnic.

One of the club's former members, Haran Nadarajan, who recently graduated from St. Patrick's School, said, "I've learnt to be always critical of what I'm reading which I think will be helpful when I enter the workforce."

andreang@sph.com.sg