Implementing guided inquiry

Based on the Information Search Process (ISP) (Kuhlthau & Maniotes, 2010), the TL collaborates with classroom teachers to guide students through the inquiry process. The majority of the literature supports such a process and advantages of implementing a guided inquiry (GI) process would include students developing independence, higher order thinking skills, information fluency and teachers having various opportunities to gather evidence of student learning throughout the process (Fitzgerald, 2011). Despite such advantage, the TL would also face disadvantages during implementation.

GI requires a team approach to learning (Sherman, 2011; Herring, 2011) and this requires time, careful planning and willing parties. Some classroom teachers may view this newly implemented process as an increase in workload. Also, some teachers’ struggle with the concept of student trust and freedom. In my experience, ‘old school’ teachers liken this approach to losing control and encouraging poor classroom discipline.


Fitzgerald, L. (2011). The twin purposes of Guided Inquiry: Guiding student inquiry and evidence based practice. Scan, 30(1), 26-41.

Herring, J.E. (2011). Improving students’ web use and informaton literacy: A guide for teachers and teacher librarians. London: Facet Publishing.

Kuhlthau, C.K. & Maniotes, L.K. (2010). Building guided inquiry teams for 21st-century learners. School Library Monthly, XXVI(5), 18-21.

 Sheerman, A. (2011). Accepting the challenge: Evidence based practice at Broughton Anglican College. Scan, 30(2), 24-33.


2 thoughts on “Implementing guided inquiry

  1. “In my experience, ‘old school’ teachers liken this approach to losing control and encouraging poor classroom discipline.” Yeah – they hate it when students learn and have fun doing it.

  2. Pingback: Assessment Item 5 – Part B – Critical Comparison | that librarian is wearing the coolest glasses!

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