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Physics Seminar (Borgardt): 1. Start Here

Information Literacy activity guide for the Fall 2019 Physics Seminar with Prof. Borgardt


Research in Physics: Opening the Community

This semester, you and a small team of your peers will be researching a specific Physics topic.


Information on a topic is framed and perceived differently based on the source type (news paper article vs academic article vs tweet). As a team, you will be exploring all the different ways both scholars and the general public talk about your assigned topic.


This is an opportunity for you to exercise your skills as an individual contributor, team member, facilitator, and researcher. Each person in your team will have an opportunity to conduct individual research, facilitate a group discussion, evaluate relevant sources, and generate a final product that appeals to Physics-POE members and the greater Juniata College community.


Each team member will be assigned to a specific perspective/source type:

  • Academic Article
  • News Article
  • Historical to Current perspectives
  • Social Media
  • Reference (introductory media)

Over the next few weeks, you will have the chance to facilitate discussion within your group about your selected resources and how they can be used to better inform the general public about the your topic through the media of your choice: blog, poster, podcast, report, ect.

Learning Objectives

Overview: Students will be examining a wide range of perspectives, publications, and venues for information on a single Physics topic. They will be working as a group to find academic, popular, and reference resources, evaluate information, and synthesize the collective information into a short document.


  • Students will be aware of different types of authority
  • Students will examine the impact of certain information based on delivery method (academic article, social media post, news article, book, etc)
  • Students will learn that there is more than one way to find information on a topic
  • Students will learn that they are in an ongoing scholarly conversation on their research topic

Information Literacy Frames Addressed:

  • Authority is constructed and contextual
  • Research as inquiry
  • Information has Value
  • Scholarship as Conversation
  • Searching as Strategic Exploration