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Camille Abdeljawad: Scholars at Work

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About Scholars @ Work

Scholars @ Work is an initiative from the Faculty Center for Innovation designed to showcase the incredible and innovative research and scholarship from Park faculty members around the world. In addition to faculty profiles, Scholars @ Work hosts an annual fall reception and a roundtable panel discussion every semester giving faculty across disciplines an opportunity to collaboratively discuss a topic of timely importance to the University. For more information on Scholars @ Work, visit our web page!

Camille Abdeljawad

Assistant Professor of Library Instruction & Outreach / First Year Experience Coordinator

Parkville Campus, Norrington 206

Scholarship Highlights

Camille's impressive career has included published scholarship on a wide variety of topics. Browse selected highlights from her research, and view her CV below.

Abdeljawad, C. (2023). HOAX: How perceived authority of information sources affects students’ likeliness to disseminate misinformation. Journal of New Librarianship, 8(1), 183–205.

This study seeks to understand how students interact with social media and information sharing, as well as how perceived authority impacts their habits using a mixed-methods survey approach. The changing landscape of misinformation on social media has called into question what role students perception of authority has in the spread of misinformation among undergraduate students. Previous research has surveyed students on their information sharing behaviors, but has yet to broach the specific consequences of information being spread by a perceived authority. The findings from this study indicate that students rely on traditional forms of authority (such as doctors, police officers), but there is also a relationship between the emotional tone of information sources and certain aspects of students’ evaluations of source authority, such as being “verified” on traditional social media platforms. This study has implications for teaching information literacy to undergraduates.

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Abdeljawad, C. (2022) "Perceived Authority, Real Consequences: Research-Informed Practices to Teaching Students about Authority & Misinformation," LOEX Quarterly: Vol. 48: No. 4, Article 3.

The Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education made waves when it was introduced to librarians in 2015 (Association of College & Research Libraries, 2015). Among these “frames,” which were deliberately left open to interpretation and flexibility, was the idea that authority was both contextual and constructed. As I taught information literacy concepts as an instructional librarian in the library classroom, I was struck by this particular frame and the questions it left unanswered for both me and my students. I thus created a research study to not only understand this frame of information literacy, but also to understand how students conceptualize authority prior to any information literacy instruction. In measuring students’ likeliness to disseminate misinformation if it comes from a perceived authority, I was able to better understand my students and draw conclusions about the work that needed to be done to make sure they were information literate. These proceedings will include an overview of the study conducted and the research-informed practices that were adopted in order to teach students about authority and misinformation online.

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About Camille

Camille Abdeljawad is an Assistant Professor of Library Instruction & Outreach and the First Year Experience Coordinator at Park University. She is located at the Parkville, Missouri Campus.

Camille earned a Bachelor of Arts in English and a Master of Library Science from Emporia State University. As a librarian, she teaches information literacy and research skills to a diverse student population, including distance and contemporary students. Most recently, she has undergone the development of a robust First Year Experience program at Park University. She is a member of the American Library Association and the Association of College and Research Libraries. 

Camille’s research interests include investigating student perception of source authority and misinformation. In her three years at Park, she has been an advocate for teaching information literacy skills for every facet of students’ lives. 

When not in the Norrington Center, Camille enjoys reading and creative writing, as well as scouring the Flint Hills of Kansas to find the very best sunsets with her husband.

Wise words from Camille

"Conducting research empowers me to be curious: about myself, about my students, and about the community we are cultivating."

Abdeljawad, C. & Theiss, D. (Eds.). (2024) Collaborations and outreach for student success: Initiatives for college and small university libraries. ACRL Press.

Collaborations and Outreach for Student Success: Small to Mid-sized Academic Library Perspectives consists of three sections highlighting the importance and relevance of small to mid-sized academic libraries partnering with other areas within their institution, with other institutions, and with community partners for student success and wellness. While many volumes have been published about academic library outreach programs, these often showcase libraries with extensive staff, budgets, and materials available to them. As librarians from small-mid-size institutions, we want to provide a volume aimed specifically at libraries found in ACRL’s College Libraries Section (CLS), as they often operate with minimal library staff and smaller budgets. Readers will take away practical examples of collaboration across their campus and community that are suitable for their institution size. They will also be challenged to explore how these programs can be assessed and recreated at their own institution.

This volume will focus on showcasing case studies from small to mid-sized libraries that have built collaborative initiatives and partnerships within and outside their institutions which have cultivated student wellness and success. Selected authors will be invited to contribute case studies to be included and a call for proposals will be solicited. Contributors will be given a case study outline to utilize. Case study authors will be invited to participate in a peer review process by examining other potential section contributions and offering suggestions as well as receiving feedback on their work.

Scholar Spotlight

Abdeljawad, C. (2022) Capitalizing on your students’ talents for the betterment of your library: Creating a student internship. In Brick & Click Annual Conference 2022 Proceedings.

In the Fall of 2021, librarians at a mid-sized institution’s library approached the Communication Studies department about the possibility of hosting a student intern to assist with social media communications for the library. This was deemed a mutually beneficial experience: the library received assistance with marketing and communication, while the intern received applicable, real-world experience operating and designing social media posts for a real organization. Though the library had undergraduate and graduate student employees before, this was the first time the library had ever hosted an internship which meant starting from scratch. While the library’s student internship program has only benefited from an intern for one semester, there has already been an increase in social media engagement and student interaction, librarian productivity, and intern satisfaction, signifying to the librarians that this is a worthwhile and mutually beneficial experience. This paper will detail the process the library went through in creating a student internship from start to finish: from writing the position description and learning outcomes, to supervisory duties, to the intern’s final project, a portfolio of the work they did throughout the term. In addition, the paper includes examples of the student intern’s work and discussion of knowledge gained from methods the intern used to market and promote library services, resources and events as well as how to engage social media followers. Finally, the paper will also present applicable steps for libraries to take in order to create a similar internship program, including creating a social media contract, implementing supervisory techniques, designing learning outcomes for an optimal intern learning experience, and evaluating the program’s viability for future semesters.

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Abdeljawad, C. “Against All Odds: Becoming an advocate for library instruction to promote student success” in Instructional Identities and Information Literacy, Volume 1: Transforming Ourselves. 2023 (ACRL).

Are librarians teachers? Many academic librarians enter teaching roles with limited experience or education in instruction, discovering how to engage students in learning from their own observations, trial-and-error, or professional learning opportunities.

Grappling with this potentially unexpected identity comes amid a time of significant transition for higher education itself. Academic librarians must figure out how to counter mis-, dis-, and malinformation, address shrinking funding for collections while costs increase, and establish meaningful partnerships in diverse, data-driven environments.  And writ large, librarianship as a profession continues to grapple with its responsibility to challenge information illiteracy across contexts, its support of systemic systems of oppression under the guise of neutrality, and its value to a society flooded with information.

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