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Program Philosophy - Critical Inquiry

Inquiry is that process of asking questions and getting answers by which we progress intellectually from what is known to us broadly or unclearly to what is known by us more absolutely. In many respects, it strongly overlaps with critical thinking, which we can understand as the ability to entertain and evaluate multiple perspectives in light of some purpose.

Our view of how inquiry functions as a method of learning can be summarized by a few common, broad principles:

Orientation – surveying an argument, problem, or topic in order to acquire a “big picture” perspective on it.

Analysis – breaking the “big picture” into its proper parts; dividing a topic into subtopics of inquiry; dividing a problem into its sub-problems.

Questioning – recognizing when additional information about those parts is needed; seeking out the internal relationship of those parts.

Reflection – taking time to think about the answers to these questions.

Organization – recognizing what aspects of an argument, problem, or topic are most and least important and so arranging the parts through one’s thinking.

Synthesis – putting the pieces back together in an informed and organized way; solving a problem; understanding the import of an argument; bringing parts, transformed by inquiry, into a new relation with each other. Re-presentation – stating a thesis and expounding on it in an organized way; explaining the structure and solution of a problem; re-articulating the import of an argument; coherent expression of synthetic understanding.

Our program is oriented by this broad view of information literacy and critical thinking, which can also be called critical inquiry.

Program Contact

Coordinator of Information Literacy and Assessment 

Poggiali, Jennifer
Assessment and Special Projects Librarian

Leonard Lief Library’s Interlibrary Loan service gives patrons access to materials not available on campus or through the CUNY Libraries Inter-Campus Service [CLICS].

Interlibrary Loan services are available to Lehman College faculty, staff, graduate students, and undergraduate students enrolled in the Honors College. For more information please see our Interlibrary Loan Policy (PDF). PDF ICON Logo

From off-campus, Lehman users will be prompted to log into databases, e-journals, e-books, and other subscription resources via their Library Barcode.

Need Help?

To login, enter your barcode without spaces or dashes.
The barcode is located on the front of your ID Card:

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Your barcode must be activated in the CUNY library system.
Your account must not have any outstanding fines.
To activate your barcode, visit the Library’s Circulation Desk.

To report a problem, please fill out the following form report a technical problem

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What is CUNY Academic Works?

CUNY Academic Works is a service of the CUNY Libraries dedicated to collecting and providing access to the research, scholarship and creative work of the City University of New York. In service to CUNY’s mission as a public university, content in Academic Works is freely available to all.

Who can submit content?
CUNY Academic Works accepts content from current members of the CUNY community, including students, faculty, and staff.

What types of content can I submit?

CUNY Academic Works collects a diverse range of scholarly and creative works created at CUNY. This includes: Faculty research such as articles, book chapters, and conference presentations
Student theses and dissertations
Open Educational Resources (OERs)
Digitized materials from CUNY archives and special collections
Scholarly journals published by or associated with the University …and more

Why should I submit content?

Submitting content to CUNY Academic Works benefits you, your work, and the local and global communities in which we live. You should submit content to:

Increase the impact of your work, which will be searchable via major search engines such Google Scholar as well as CUNY Libraries’ OneSearch
Receive a monthly email telling you how many times your work has been viewed and downloaded
Preserve and share your scholarly and creative work in a single place
Share your work with students and scholars who can’t access it
Promote collaboration with colleagues at other CUNY campuses

How do I submit content?

It’s easy! Faculty and staff can create an account and submit content directly at academicworks.cuny.edu/le.

For more information
Have a question or just want to learn more about CUNY Academic Works?

CUNY Academic Works

As a central locus of teaching and learning, the Library is pivotal in supporting Lehman College's undergraduate and graduate programs - as well as promising high school students and Doctoral candidates.

How Friends of the Leonard Lief Library Can Help

Friends of the Lehman College Library provide private financial support for collections, electronic resources, and competitive facilities and technology. As the portal to print, electronic, and multimedia resources, today's libraries face increased demands with rapid developments in data management and information technologies. Moreover - given escalating costs of library materials - support of Friends of the Library is more timely than ever.

By making a minimum gift of $50, you invest in the Library's future and are granted access privileges and related benefits. Larger gifts provide even enhanced assistance for sustaining the augmenting information resources required for students and faculty.

Benefits for Friends of the Library

Daily access to a comprehensive college library

Research support from qualified reference librarians

Book borrowing privileges

Announcements of book sales and special events

Library newsletter

To make an online donation, please visit our 'Giving to Lehman' page.

Download Membership Pledge and newest Friends of the Library brochure

Membership Form (PDF)pdf logo icon

Library is pleased to be hosting Kanopy's streaming media service.

Faculty are encouraged to fill out this Request Form.

Purchased titles will then be added to the collection for viewing.

Titles not included in the Kanopy catalog can be requested by sending a separate e-mail to: Stephen.Walker@lehman.cuny.edu

New York Public Library, Columbia University, and New York University have developed a lending program called MaRLI: Manhattan Research Library Initiative for faculty and graduate students.

CUNY faculty and graduate students may apply with New York Public Library for borrowing privileges for selected items from NYPL Research Libraries, Columbia and NYU. Cardholders from each institution - including CUNY faculty and graduate students -are invited to apply for borrowing privileges from all three research libraries.

CUNY users with questions about MaRLI, please contact: marli@nypl.org

For more information about MaRLI, please see MaRLi page.

Remember that reference librarians can issue METRO Referral passes for one-time, onsite access for a specific, named item from any metropolitan area library catalog.