Resources for First Year Seminar Instructors

icon of an exclamation markDue to renovation and expansion-related building closures, all Randall Library instruction for Summer 2024 will take place virtually or in your classroom. Please contact your liaison librarian to schedule an instruction session or coordinate alternate locations if needed. 

Resources for First Year & Transfer Seminar (UNI 101/201) INSTRUCTORS

Welcome UNI instructors!  On this page, you will find everything you need to help your FYS students with library and information literacy resources.

(Looking for HON 110? Visit the new HON 110 resource page.)

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Beginning in the Fall of 2023, UNI 101 & 201 classes will use a series of 4 information literacy lesson plans. These lessons, developed by Randall Library faculty experts in information literacy, instructional designers, and veteran UNI instructors, are mandatory for all UNI 101/201 instructors. It replaces the previous information literacy lesson plan. You will be delivering this content in your course. Although this is a lot of content, all of the materials are prepared for you – you just need to set aside your 4 class periods to deliver them!

We have included information for you, as the instructor, to understand what content should be covered in this lesson, why this is the content we are asking you to cover, and when this content should be delivered. We highly encourage you to schedule these lesson in conjunction with their group project assignment and complete them within a month, as the content should help your students with the confidence and skills for their research. While we also encourage you to make this lesson your own, using your own style, the core concepts and learning outcomes should remain the same.

These lessons will walk students through the research process up to the point where they would start writing a paper, but the research paper is no longer a required element of UNI 101 or 201. Students who are concurrently enrolled in Writing Intensive courses may find the scaffolded approach to research useful in applying to other classes, so you may wish to consider offering flexibility in assignment topics.

Questions? Email Brittany O’Neill, Information Literacy Librarian at Randall Library at

What do I (the instructor) have to do?

Below is a breakdown of the steps you must complete in order to integrate the library components into your class. 

Lesson Plan Step 1: Inquire & ExploreLesson Plan Step 2: EvaluateLesson Plan Step 3: Identify & Analyze

Lesson Plan Step 4: CiteLesson Plan Step 5: Research Reflection

Early in the semester: Schedule your 4 information literacy lesson plans and assign the pre- and post- class assignments in Canvas before and after those class sessions.

  1. Deliver lesson #1, Inquire & Explore.
  2. Deliver lesson #2, Examine.
  3. Deliver lesson #3, Identify & Analyze.
  4. Deliver lesson #4, Citations & Plagiarism.
  5. Assign your students the Research Reflection in Canvas.

What are the FYS Library Components?


For Fall 2024, there are 4 updated plans created for you by librarians, instructional designers, and UNI instructors. Each lesson plan includes:

  1. Pre-class assignments for students to complete ahead of the session
  2. A small group activity with worksheets
  3. A large group discussion
  4. A mini-lecture
  5. A slide deck to accompany the lesson plan
  6. Post-class homework assignments
  7. Options for asynchronous online classes.

The lesson plans cover each step of the research process and are carefully scaffolded to build on one another and enable student learning. The lesson plan topics are:

  1. Inquire & Explore: developing research questions, building effective search strategies, and learning to navigate library resources

  2. Examine: evaluating information, exploring popular sources, and fact-checking the web (this is the updated version of last year’s lesson plan)

  3. Identify & Analyze: exploring scholarly sources, identifying what’s important in a scholarly article, and understanding peer-review

  4. Citations & Plagiarism: understanding scholarly conversations, practicing citations, and avoiding plagiarism

There is no longer face-to-face information literacy instruction for UNI courses. Please refer to the list of supplemental offerings at the bottom of this page for other opportunities to connect your students with the library and librarians.


A final homework assignment (linked below) that asks students to reflect critically on their research process as they complete the final module or finish a research project. After completing this reflection, students will be cognizant of...

  • which types of sources they used and why.
  • how the information they found was used in their project.
  • how they would change their research process in the future.

We recommend that you assign this reflection after students complete the Citations & Plagiarism module, or if you are connecting their research to their group projects, after they have completed their presentations.

Where do I find the materials?

All of the materials are created for you. To facilitate easier location of materials, they are centralized in two places, based on audience:

  • Instructor-facing documents, such as the facilitator guides and lesson plans, are in UNI Instructor Resources on Teams (see 2024-2025 Information Literacy Lesson Plans, and contact Kelsey Axe if you have questions about access to Teams.) Not affiliated with UNI but still want to see the lesson plans? This link will give you access, although may not be updated as frequently.
  • Student-facing materials, such as the pre- and post-class homework and slides, are now integrated directly into your online textbook in Canvas. You will see them at the end of the book under ‘Information Literacy Portfolio.’ The textbook can be found in Canvas Commons by searching for the book by title: “Explore. Prepare. Succeed."

If you're not finding something, or want to know how best to deliver these lessons in your class, reach out to Brittany O'Neill, Information Literacy Librarian - don't hesitate to ask questions!   

Optional Library Offerings

Journal Prompts

DIY IL in-class activities

Plagiarism tutorial

Media literacy tutorial

MLA and APA Canvas modules

Randall Library Tours

  • If you would like your students to tour Randall Library, we are providing a script for instructors to guide their students through the spaces, resources, and services that are most relevant to them. There are scripts for both short and extended tours. If you have a Seahawk LINK, please have them deliver the tour as we have found students share valuable insight into how they use the library! If you would prefer to have one of our Building Operations staff guide the tour, please complete this form.


Contact Brittany O'Neill, Information Literacy Librarian, at