Assessment in Action

Bucks County Community College: Project Description

Page 1


Primary Outcome Examined (select one or more)

(No) Student Learning: Assignment

(No) Student Learning: Course

(No) Student Learning: Major

(No) Student Learning: Degree

(No) Student Engagement

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: Games

Instruction: One Shot

(No) 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

English Composition

General Education

(No) Information Literacy Credit Course

(No) Other (please describe)

AiA Team Members (select one or more)

(No) Assessment Office

Institutional Research

Teaching Faculty

(No) Writing Center

(No) Information/Academic Technology

(No) Student Affairs

(No) Campus Administrator

Library Administrator

Other Librarian

(No) Other (please describe)

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Methods and Tools (select one or more)

(No) Survey

(No) Interviews

(No) Focus Group(s)

(No) Observation

(No) Pre/Post Test

(No) Rubric

Other (please describe)

Student success tracking by attendance

Direct Data Type (select one or more)

(No) Student Portfolio

(No) Research Paper/Project

(No) Class Assignment (other than research paper/project)

Other (please describe)


Indirect Data Type (select one or more)

(No) Test Scores


(No) Degree Completion Rate

(No) Retention Rate

(No) Other (please describe)

Page 3

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. Bucks County Community College provides a diverse community of learners with exemplary, accessible educational opportunities and the personal connections that foster success. To fully align with the institutional priorities (graduation, retention, transfer, and employment), student-level tracking over possibly many years was needed. This first year’s data were an entrant toward later analysis of these effects with more points of data collection planned to strengthen the case for library impact. During the life of the AiA component, GPA was an interim measure and test case. To that end, the research question was, “How does an individual student’s participation in information/media literacy sessions impact course grades?” The team consisted of a faculty librarian, library director, Institutional Research, and a Language & Literature faculty member allowing the project to be informed by the primary stakeholders, practitioners and those analyzing the data (English Composition comprises a major portion of the information/media literacy sessions).

  • 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. The Bucks assessment project shows that library assessment can go beyond the small sample size, pre/post tests and minor measures of learning that were proliferated in the information literacy literature into the heart of VAL territory: connecting library activities to broad measures of achievement that keep administrators up at night. While more points of collection are needed because of a tenuous causal link between raw participation and “student success” goals, the preliminary results show a correlation between library participation and better grades in a course.

  • 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. This project forms a core of assessment data at the student level around which a much larger picture can be built. As students move through their academic careers, continued analysis will give a richer and larger picture of library impact. In the future, more data on points of contact between students and learning resources faculty and staff will be added along with artifacts to measure learning. The changes in institutional practices will come as the students (and therefore) data, mature.

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

  1. Paul Proces
    Bucks County Community College
    275 Swamp Road
    Newtown, PA 18940
    215-497- 8711

    Linda McCann
    Bucks County Community College
    275 Swamp Road
    Newtown, PA 18940

Information Literacy Contributing to Student Success

The poster addresses a Value of Academic Libraries recommendation: tie library assessment to institutional goals. Individual-level student tracking via attendance from literacies sessions compares library participation to success in the course in the near term and opens the possibility of later analysis on transfer, retention or employment. Current analysis shows promising measure of library impact, however, more data are needed to make a compelling case.