Assessment in Action

Northeastern State University: Project Description

Page 1


Primary Outcome Examined (select one or more)

Student Learning: Assignment

(No) Student Learning: Course

(No) Student Learning: Major

(No) Student Learning: Degree

(No) Student Engagement

(No) Student Success

(No) Academic Intimacy/Rapport

(No) Enrollment

(No) Retention

(No) Completion

(No) Graduation

(No) Articulation

(No) Graduates' Career Success

(No) Testing (e.g., GRE, MCAT, LSAT, CAAP, CLA, MAPP)

(No) Other (please describe)

Primary Library Factor Examined (select one or more)

(No) Instruction

(No) Instruction: Games

(No) Instruction: One Shot

Instruction: Course Embedded

(No) Instruction: Self-Paced Tutorials

(No) Reference

(No) Educational Role (other than reference or instruction)

(No) Space, Physical

(No) Discovery (library resources integrated in institutional web and other information portals)

(No) Discovery (library resource guides)

(No) Discovery (from preferred user starting points)

(No) Collections (quality, depth, diversity, format or currency)

(No) Personnel (number and quality)

(No) Other (please describe)

Student Population (select one or more)


(No) Graduate

(No) Incoming

(No) Graduating

(No) Pre-College/Developmental/Basic Skills

(No) Other (please describe)

Discipline (select one or more)

(No) Arts

(No) Humanities

(No) Social Sciences

(No) Natural Sciences (i.e., space, earth, life, chemistry or physics)

(No) Formal Sciences (i.e., computer science, logic, mathematics, statistics or systems science)

(No) Professions/Applied Sciences

(No) English Composition

(No) General Education

(No) Information Literacy Credit Course

Other (please describe)

First year student transition course

AiA Team Members (select one or more)

Assessment Office

Institutional Research

(No) Teaching Faculty

(No) Writing Center

(No) Information/Academic Technology

(No) Student Affairs

(No) Campus Administrator

(No) Library Administrator

Other Librarian

(No) Other (please describe)

Center for Teaching and Learning, Student Academic Success Center/Advising

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Methods and Tools (select one or more)


(No) Interviews

(No) Focus Group(s)

(No) Observation

Pre/Post Test

(No) Rubric

(No) Other (please describe)

Direct Data Type (select one or more)

(No) Student Portfolio

(No) Research Paper/Project

Class Assignment (other than research paper/project)

(No) Other (please describe)

Indirect Data Type (select one or more)

(No) Test Scores

(No) GPA

(No) Degree Completion Rate

Retention Rate

(No) Other (please describe)

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Inquiry Question (150 words open)

What was the project's primary inquiry question?

  1. Do NSU first year students learn to apply criteria in the evaluation of websites and select reliable sources of information (library catalog, Google Scholar and subscription databases) from the transition course information literacy assignment?

Executive Summary (150 words open)

  • How does the project align with your institution’s priorities and needs?
  • Why did you choose the outcome and library factor as areas to examine?
  • Why was the team composition appropriate?

  1. Northeastern State University’s institutional student learning objectives, “Degrees of Excellence,” includes the 5 information literacy learning outcomes from ACRL’s standards for higher education. The library has a strategic plan outcome to expand information literacy assessment so that it tracks the effect of information literacy instruction in student success. As a third intersection for this project, the institution’s transition course for first year students includes a learning objective for students to be able to successfully evaluate the reliability of a resource and the comparative worth of various sources.
    In order for one assessment project to address all three of these overlapping goals for our school, library and course, our team includes representatives from all of these units; employees of the library, institutional assessment, student academic success and the administrator of the transition course.

  • What are the significant contributions of your project?
  • What was learned about assessing the library’s impact on student learning and success?
  • What was learned about creating or contributing to a culture of assessment on campus?
  • What, if any, are the significant findings of your project?

  1. Everyone on the team learned a lot about how to measure student learning in a more scientific and reliable way. The assistance available from our institutional assessment office has been as invaluable as we heard it would be from the AiA program coordinators and former cohorts.
    We are hopeful that the results are leading us to improve the instruction in a way that increases our students’ learning. Other librarians have asked for our help to create their own assessment projects, but the success of our work and ability to share what we have learned with others has not spread beyond the library yet.

  • What will you change as a result of what you learned (– e.g., institutional activities, library functions or practices, personal/professional practice, other)?
  • How does this project contribute to current, past, or future assessment activities on your campus?

  1. As a result of the information literacy assignment and instruction, NSU first year students increased their ability to select the appropriate searching tool for college level information needs. This part of the instruction was delivered face to face so we will continue with this curriculum unchanged.
    Despite their confidence about evaluating websites, 2⁄3 of them could not identify a hoax website. This part of the instruction was delivered through videos during an online module. We are planning to:
    -strengthen the instruction videos by moving away from typical evaluation criteria, respecting the
    students' technological confidence,
    -adding passwords to encourage more students to watch the videos,
    -reversing the order of the assignment to make the online piece follow the in-person instruction,
    -integrating it into their blackboard course instead of requiring self-enrollment,
    -continue following re-enrollment of students from the first study,
    -compare assessment of Fall 2016 with fall 2015 study results

Please list any articles published, presentations given, URL of project website, and team leader contact details.

  1. Woitte, S., Hoenes, R., McCay, K., McLane, C., & Standley, O. (2016). Assessing Information Literacy Skills of First Semester Freshmen at Northeastern State University. Oklahoma Research Day, Tahlequah, OK.
    Susan Woitte
    711 N. Grand Avenue
    Tahlequah, OK 74464

The purpose of this study was to assess the information literacy assignment within the first year transition course at Northeastern State University. Utilizing a pre and post survey that required them to select a searching tool and to evaluate two websites, our results show that students improved their ability to select the most appropriate database for a stated information need, however their ability to correctly evaluate websites did not improve.
AiA_Florida_36x36_Rev09.pdf Assessing Information Literacy Skills of First Semester Freshmen