Challenges to Information Literacy Online Learning in Higher Education: Libraries, Archives and Museums Digital Strategic Convergence

Discussing the impacts of COVID19 pandemic requires both critical and reflective thinking. One approach is to introduce the idea of digital maturity (Dwivedi et al, 2020). This implies that a strategy must be developed in such a way to deal with complexity and a hybrid thinking. This approach might enable us to create the digital future of cultural institutions– (Levi et al, 2019). Our paper aims to synthesize international research and debates around the impact of the digital transition in two aspects:

• in competences, strategies and practices of information literacy in the area of digital convergence of libraries, archives, and museums; and

• in the forms of best practice and innovation in library and information science (LIS) Education by presenting the epistemological and pedagogical formats developed in new collaborative lines of action.

There is still little knowledge among the various stakeholders about the necessary changes needed to develop and update skills in information literacy for professionals employed or seeking employment in emerging markets in the cultural sector. It is up to the universities to promote the emergence of courses suitable for introducing digital skills that are needed in the redefinition of disciplinary boundaries. To meet these needs, the Lisbon Region Consortium of the Universities Portugal Project – Connecting Knowledge, the Open University and the Universidade Nova de Lisboa structured, in 2022/23, two different types of LLL courses:

  • “Specialization Course in Culture and Digital Communication in Archives, Libraries and Museum (3 months); and
  • “Post-graduation Degree in Digital Information Management for Libraries, Archives and Museums” (2 semesters).

The courses adopted the advantages of distance and online learning based on the methodological pillars and outcomes of the Virtual Pedagogical Model (VPM) of the Open University (Mendes et al, 2018). Thus, the courses incorportedstudent-centered learning, following the construction of the European Higher Education Area (Bologna Process); the primacy of flexibility, allowing the student to carry out his learning; the primacy of interaction, as the student is not understood as simple content receiver, but as an active element of a collaborative network of learning, where information literacy is the result; and the principle of digital literacy as a factor of social inclusion.

This cooperative experience in higher education, especially in the LIS scientific field, represents a strategical focus on the link between knowledge management and information and digital literacy in Portugal.


  • Dwivedi, Y. K., Hughes, D. L., Coombs, C., Constantiou, I., Duan, Y., Edwards, J. S., & Upadhyay, N. (2020). Impact of COVID-19 pandemic on information management research and practice: Transforming education, work and life. International Journal of Information Management, 55, 10221.
  • Levi, H., Wally, S., Lenh, D., & Cooke, S. (2019). The Routledge international handbook of new digital practices in galleries, libraries, archives, museums and heritage sites. London: Routledge.
  • Mendes, A., Bastos, G., Amante, L., Aires, L., & Cardoso, T. (2018). Modelo pedagógico virtual. Cenários de desenvolvimento. Lisboa: Universidade Aberta. Retrieved from

Ana Novo1, Paula Ochôa2
1Universidade Aberta (Open University), Lisboa, Portugal; 2Universidade Nova – FCSH, Lisboa, Portugal

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