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Knowledge Management: Knowledge Management Framework for partner institutions

A guide explaining Knowledge Management, and associated resources

I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better.

Maya Angelou

This page, adapted from the University of Hull's Knowledge Management Framework, aims to support people in several organisations, each with their own resources and processes.

Information and resources specific to the University of Hull have been removed. Links to SkillsGuides that cover core skills and practices, e.g. reading, note-taking, and referencing, are retained but please be aware they may include links to services and software available only to members of the University of Hull.

You may also find it useful to refer to the Decolonise, democratise and diversify reading lists SkillsGuide for suggestions for evaluating your reading lists and seeking diverse voices and knowledge.

How to use the knowledge management framework

You can click on each of the questions below to see tips and suggestions. Where it is relevant, links to publicly available support is included. For example, many of the online resources produced by the University Library's Skills Team can be used by our partners.

You may find it useful to review Skills necessary for effective knowledge management first.


Key considerations for course design

Consider how students will know what is expected of them. What resources and support are available in your college to help them, and you?

This will depend on what is appropriate to the level of study and research for the discipline. Are the resources available via the library or will you need to request access to new ones? Have you asked the library team to check licensing and costs? Is there sufficient time in which new resources can be acquired and made available?

Unfortunately, not all publishers make their resources available to education libraries, so it may not be possible to provide access to something you would like to use in teaching. Talk to your library team to understand what is possible.
An important aim of reading list guidance is to ensure all students have fair and equitable access to relevant information, regardless of their circumstances. Some will readily be able to access physical resources in the library while others will be more reliant on online access. Conversely, some students may not have access to their own device or a reliable internet connection, and so will need to use print materials.

The HelpGuide Decolonise, democratise and diversify reading lists. includes find information about evaluating your list, and suggestions for seeking more diverse voices and knowledge.

You can find information about decolonization at Diversified collections You may not be able to use the resources listed towards the end of the page as they are licensed only to members of the University of Hull, but they may help inform your thinking.

You will need to check your institution’s library catalogue and/ or website to see what is available. Your library and/or skills or study support teams may also be able to advise you. Different learning styles will benefit from access to different types of information sources, e.g. film, audio, and interactive resources.

Some of the University Library Skills Team's online SkillsGuides may be useful. For example, students just starting their course may benefit from the Essay writing video workshop.
This will vary across disciplines, with some students needing to use articles at an early stage in their course while others may not need them until their second year.

Prior to joining your institution, many students will not have encountered research and journals databases and may not understand what they are, or how and why to use them. They will not necessarily understand the differences between information formats, and the roles in knowledge creation and sharing. This also affects their reading.

Videos to support Finding quality journal articles are available via the Video workshops page.

As student progress through your programme, they may need to conduct Literature reviews or systematic reviews.

Whatever level of study your students are undertaking, will you provide opportunities within the module for your students to develop these skills, and if so, how?
Different types of information sources require different reading skills. For example, journal articles should not be read from start to finish in the same way as a book or chapter. Most students are not aware of this when they first encounter articles, and if they are struggling to master the reading techniques they cannot comprehend and evaluate the meaning of the content.

The SkillsGuide introducing students to Reading at University. is a helpful starting point.
Prior to university, not all students will have had the opportunity to develop the skills needed to critically read, evaluate sources, and write. They will need support to move from being descriptive to being critical. Some will understand being critical as being negative, others will not feel they have the right to critique the work of experts in a field to which they themselves are relatively new.

How will they gain experience of asking:
  • Does the source offer the right type and level of information for the work you are undertaking?
  • How reliable and authoritative are the books, articles, etc. that you have found?
  • Are they relevant to and useful for the work you are doing?
There is guidance about how to search for, select, and evaluate information sources on The process of reviewing page of the Literature reviews SkillsGuide.

Support for Critical writing is available as a SkillsGuide, and video workshop.
Introduce the various aspects of ethical information management in ways that emphasise the positives rather than the negatives. For example, referencing is often discussed in terms of avoiding plagiarism, and the consequences of getting it wrong, rather than focusing on issues of academic integrity and ethical practice.

Students also need to be competent and confident with copyright and licensing issues, and be safe and secure online.

What opportunities will they have within your module to practice these skills and behaviours?

Useful SkillsGuides include Digital student for copyright, licensing, and online safety and security, and Referencing your work.
Citations and referencing will be new concepts to many students. If the focus is on the negative aspects, such as the consequences of plagiarism this creates worry and distraction. By emphasising the positive aspects of citing and referencing work students can concentrate on what to do and why.

Your students may find it useful to read the pages on Getting started, and and Using sources in writing on the Referencing your work SkillsGuide

Do the assessment marking criteria include the loss or gain of marks for referencing? If so, is this clear to your students so that they can understand the importance of this practice, and how developing it can help them gain a better overall mark?

Does your institution provide access to referencing software, also known as bibliographic software, to help your students manage their references and create bibliographies? If so, once they have understood the basic principles, you may also wish to introduce them to such tools. Examples of licensed software include EndNote and RefWorks. There are also free packages available on the internet, e.g. Mendeley and Zotero.
The University’s Inclusive Education Framework notes the importance of the effective use of the feedback and feedforward. How will you ensure your students have a clear understanding of their strengths and weaknesses in relation to knowledge management?

You may wish to refer to the Assessment and feedback section of the University's Inclusive Education Framework.
Assessments support students in exercising and evaluating how far they reach the module learning outcomes and/ or competencies. How will you do this in relation to the various elements of Knowledge Management?

If you have set innovative assessments, how will you assess them? Is there an established institutional or departmental rubric you can use? If not, is there external good practice, including within the University, that you can adopt or adapt?

You may wish to refer to the Assessment and feedback section of the University's Inclusive Education Framework.


Key considerations for studying and researching

Make sure you know about the range of resources and support at your college, and how you can access them in a timely way to ensure your success.

You are likely to be given a reading or resource list for each part of your course. The format of the list will vary depending on how your institution works: it may be a printed document, or available online. Whatever your reading list looks like, it is likely that the majority of the resources included on it will be available via your institution’s library or learning resource centre.

The different categories help to guide you through the sources by indicating which are the most critical to successfully acquiring and understanding disciplinary knowledge.

For example, at the University of Hull there are three reading priorities: Essential; Recommended; Background. If you are interested, you can see the definitions here.

The more extensively you read and critically engage with the range of resources on your reading list, the richer your disciplinary knowledge will become, and the stronger your arguments within your assessments.
Relevant resources may also be available in your institution's VLE (virtual learning environment), and teaching staff will refer to articles, programmes, newspaper reports etc. in teaching sessions. They will signpost you to new publications, highlight which sections are most relevant, and indicate how the reading relates to the course generally, and whether it supports an assessment.

For many of your assessments, you will also need to search for additional material. As a general rule, the further into your studying or research you are the more information you will need to find for yourself.

First, decide what type and level of information you need. Is the subject new to you? If so, you may need a general introduction or overview and this is most likely to be found in books or eBooks.

For current research, and in-depth analysis, journal articles are essential and can be found by searching a database. Your institution’s Library catalogue is the best place to start your search. For a quick guide to what databases are, read our blog post Using databases but remember you may not be able to use the databases that are mentioned at the end of the post.
To understand your discipline, and be able to effectively question and communicate your knowledge of it, you need to have read, viewed, or listened to a range of perspectives and evidence.

The wider and deeper your exploration of your subject the easier it becomes to see the bigger picture, decide on a position, and argue your point. These practices are as important in the workplace as they are in education.

It takes time and practice to become proficient in using tools such as databases, referencing and Notetaking software, or to become a good time manager .

This can seem like an additional burden on top of learning about your discipline. However, it is a good investment that will save you time and effort overall as well as contributing to ethical information management practices.
You read to gain knowledge, develop your thoughts, and add new information to that which you already have. It enables you to see connections, new perspectives, and develop arguments for your assessments.

You should approach different information sources in different ways to get the most from your reading. For example, a journal article is easier to comprehend if it is read in four stages as described in Reading journal articles. At first, this may seem like more work than reading an article straight through once. However, with practice, you will gain greater understanding, and save time overall.

See the Reading at university guide for more strategies and tips. If you are new to university, you may find the section on What to read (reading selectively) a helpful starting point.
You will be expected to participate in all of the academic opportunities presented to you within your teaching and research sessions, such as lectures, seminars, labs etc. To be successful you also need to spend time learning independently. Typically, the further you progress through your course the more independent learning and research you will need to do.

This does not mean you are alone! Your institution will provide support and guidance, so just ask for help when you need it. Teaching staff can help with academic issues, but you may also have support services such as libraries, IT, student services, welfare and more to help you navigate through your course.

You can also use most of the self-paced online SkillsGuides created by the University Library’s Skills Team. If you are not sure where to start, try typing the topic you are interested in into the Search box at the top right of the SkillsGuide page.

Several of the guides are linked from sections of this page. Remember, you will not be able to access certain resources and software that are licensed only for use by members of the University.

Ethical behaviour means observing legal and moral requirements. To ensure our work is transparent and fair, everyone needs to be aware of, and follow, ethical information practices in citing and referencing sources, following Copyright Law, Data Protection Law, and adhering to licenses for online and digital sources.

Depending on the nature of your studying or research there may be other issues you need to consider. Your teacher or supervisor will inform you about these.

The Academic integrity guide covers the key areas, and links to external sources.

You should also make yourself familiar with your institution’s policies in areas such as the acceptable use of IT equipment, and working online.

Developing good practices in all these areas while you are studying will improve your assessment outcomes, and ensure you have the right skills for your future employment.
Referencing the sources you use is good academic and ethical practice. It demonstrates the range of your reading, viewing etc., your engagement with disciplinary knowledge, strengthens your arguments, and avoids plagiarism. It is not just other people’s written work you need to reference: you must also reference music, photographs, video, material on the internet, etc.

You may find it useful to read the pages on Getting started, and and Using sources in writing on the Referencing your work SkillsGuide

Check the marking criteria for your assessments. Can you gain or lose marks for your referencing? If so, doing them correctly can be an easy way to gain a better overall mark.

Your institution may provide referencing, or bibliographic software, such as EndNote or RefWorks, to help you manage your references. There are also free packages available on the internet, e.g. Mendeley and Zotero. Learning how to use such tools can help make referencing, and creating bibliographies, quicker and easier.
A reflective journal will help you to review your learning and understand your progress towards the course’s learning outcomes and/ or competencies. It will also help you to identify and focus on areas for further development. It will help build your confidence in your knowledge and abilities.

If you are new to thinking and writing reflectively, visit the Reflective writing SkillsGuide for more information and tips.
One way to understand this is to look at the marking criteria for your assessments as these will provide both explicit and implicit clues.

How can you gain and lose marks? For example, if a proportion of marks is for the range of sources used, and the accurate referencing of them, what do you need to do to gain as many marks as possible? Do you have the skills needed to be successful, and if not, what do you need to practice?

What feedback did you receive for previous assessments? If it identified areas for further development have you been practicing so that you get an improved mark in your next assessment?