Practical learning: achieving excellence in the human services

January 23-25 2008 Edinburgh International Conference Centre

Practical skills for managing information overload using news feeds and social bookmarking

Keywords: information overload, managing information, knowledge transfer

Author: Ian Watson (IRISS)

Knowing when and why you need information, where to find it, and how to evaluate, use and communicate it in an ethical manner are increasingly recognised as key skills for lifelong learning and a pre-requisite for effective participation in the information society. In the workplace there is often an implicit assumption that workers, particularly those employed in a professional role, possess these skills, collectively known as 'Information Literacy'.
At the same time the effect of the so-called Web 2.0 technologies is to place powerful knowledge and information management tools in the hands of the practitioner. While this can be empowering, the professional practitioner, faced with an array of tools and choices, may also feel overwhelmed by technology as well as information.
While recognising the importance of strategic approaches to improving the overall level of information literacy in society, this workshop will demonstrate how, at a practical level, some key technologies can be easily and effectively deployed to the benefit of human services workers. The technologies do not in themselves provide a panacea. The objective, rather, is to introduce practitioners to the possibilities and remove the 'fear factor' that inhibits experimentation so that they may make informed decisions on applicability and relevance.

The workshop will:

The effective use of the information and knowledge management tools that are readily, and often freely, available can help manage problems of information overload by offering easy to use tools for accessing, managing and sharing information and knowledge. This workshop will introduce two key tools (Really Simple Syndication and social bookmarking) that will be of immediate benefit to practitioners and policy makers in particular.

Date: Wednesday 23 January 2008, 1.30-3.00

Venue: Carrick Three

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Organised by the Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services in association with PEPE (Practical Experiences in Professional Education).