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Visual Literacy Standards published by ACRL

New Visual Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education  have been published by the Association of College and Research Libraries. The Standards include specific learning outcomes aimed at helping students work more effectively with visual materials in an academic context. The Standards address exploring image resources, image research, interpreting & analyzing images, evaluating images and sources, using visual materials in academic projects, producing visual media, and citing and using images ethically.

Some example learning outcomes from the Standards:

Performs image and topical research concurrently, with each informing the other in an iterative resource-gathering process (2.2.f)

Describes cultural and historical factors relevant to the production of an image (e.g., time period, geography, economic conditions, political structures, social practices) (3.2.a)

Critiques persuasive or manipulative strategies that may have been used in image production to influence interpretation  (4.1.c)

Integrates images into projects purposefully, considering meaning, aesthetic criteria, visual impact, and audience (5.1.c)

Consider including visual literacy learning outcomes in your assignments. You may find students are better able to understand the role of visual materials in their academic work, and produce higher-quality projects with more meaningful and relevant visual content.

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