Many traditional first-year students arrive on college and university campuses with a great deal of experience in searching the Internet. In fact, they can find prodigious amounts of information with relative ease—as evidenced by the lists of Web sites used to document many of their research papers. Most of these students, however, lack the critical-thinking skills and database-searching proficiency necessary for them to fine-tune their information searches. They need to know how to focus their topics, where (in addition to the Internet) to search, and how to evaluate and use the information they retrieve—skills commonly encompassed in the phrase “information literacy” (Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools[CHE], 1996, p. 15). As Ernest and Paul Boyer (1996) have observed, college students need help “becom[ing] savvy consumers of information” (p. 126). The Boyers believe that, in partnership with faculty, librarians have the expertise to instruct students in information retrieval and evaluation (pp. 130–131).
Jacobson, Trudi E. and Mark, Beth, "Separating Wheat from Chaff: Helping First-year Students become Information Savvy" (2000). Library Staff Presentations & Publications. 15.