Libraries at University of Nebraska-Lincoln


Date of this Version



Reference & User Services Quarterly 49:1 (2009), pp. 33–37, 51.


Copyright © 2009 Maribeth Slebodnik and Cather Fraser Riehle. Published by the American Library Association. Used by permission.


The use of online tutorials for information literacy instruction is on the rise. Active library-related discussion lists such as ILI-L, the Association of College and Research Libraries’ discussion on information literacy and instruction, and LIBREF-L typically feature several questions and surveys related to online tutorials every week. Discussion groups and forums at library conferences consistently offer discussions, programs, and resources about creating online tutorials, and share examples. What is causing the surge of interest in online tutorials? Reasons vary: staff shortages, a desire to provide more point-of-need assistance, and increased distance learning and a growing awareness—particularly in public and academic libraries—of the learning styles of the so-called Millennial Learner, who is said to prefer interactive, technology-based learning experiences. However, one of the main reasons for the trend is that the screen capture software available for tutorial construction has also grown increasingly capable and user-friendly. In this article we will review the software programs that are available, discuss the time and resources needed, and use a set of tutorials developed at Purdue for biology students as an example throughout.