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Assessment in Action

Hofstra University: Project Description

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Primary Outcome Examined (select one or more)

Student Learning: Assignment

(No) Student Learning: Course

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)

Instruction

(No) Instruction: Games

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)

Other (please describe)

Number of books borrowed.

Student Population (select one or more)

Undergraduate

Graduate

(No) Incoming

(No) Graduating

(No) Pre-College/Developmental/Basic Skills

(No) Other (please describe)

Discipline (select one or more)

(No) Arts

Humanities

Social Sciences

Natural Sciences (i.e., space, earth, life, chemistry or physics)

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

Professions/Applied Sciences

(No) English Composition

(No) General Education

Information Literacy Credit Course

(No) Other (please describe)

AiA Team Members (select one or more)

Assessment Office

(No) Institutional Research

Teaching Faculty

(No) Writing Center

(No) Information/Academic Technology

(No) Student Affairs

Campus Administrator

(No) Library Administrator

(No) Other Librarian

(No) Other (please describe)

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Methods and Tools (select one or more)

Survey

(No) Interviews

(No) Focus Group(s)

(No) Observation

(No) Pre/Post Test

(No) Rubric

Other (please describe)

Information literacy assessment conducted through a survey

Direct Data Type (select one or more)

(No) Student Portfolio

(No) Research Paper/Project

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

(No) Other (please describe)

Indirect Data Type (select one or more)

Test Scores

(No) GPA

(No) Degree Completion Rate

(No) Retention Rate

(No) Other (please describe)

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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. Hofstra University regularly assesses student learning, engagement, and satisfaction. Further, the university’s commitment to developing information literate students is clearly articulated in its mission statement. Accordingly, the AiA project sought to determine which factors contribute to information literacy competencies (e.g., library instruction) as well as other outcomes such as retention and graduation. The team was made up of the Provost for Assessment, the Dean of the School of Liberal Arts and several teaching faculty members, as well as the librarian team leader. This composition allowed us to get input from stakeholders at multiple levels, which facilitated us in constructing and meeting goals important to the university as a whole.

  • 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 data analysis revealed that while library instruction was not a significant predictor of information literacy competency, experiences with research papers requiring library resources and use of the library’s book collection contributed significantly to information literacy skills. The results of our project indicates that instruction (whether one-shot or credit bearing) should be coupled within meaningful assignments requiring sustained engagement with library resources. On campuses assessment may often be met with wariness or timidity, however, conducting inquiry that will provide investigators with data with which to make improvements to instruction and policy can only benefit stakeholders, and students in particular.

  • 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 this project we will continue to assess all ACRL information literacy standards, including standard 4 which is often difficult to assess and therefore neglected. Further, information literacy assessment previously was conducted in a vacuum. Individual departments did their own assessments independent of librarian input. A faculty librarian will now be a part of the IL assessments in the School of Liberal Arts. Additionally, the results of this project have been shared with the library instruction department and discussions are currently scheduled discuss the implications for teaching and learning information literacy skills.

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

  1. Team Leader: Amy Catalano Ed.D., MALS, MLS
    Amy.Catalano@Hofstra.edu
    026 Hagedorn Hall
    Hofstra University
    Hempstead TPK, Hempstead, NY
    11549

Predictors of Information Literacy Competencies at a Large University: What Role Does Library Instruction Play?

Investigating the impact of library instruction, researchers assessed the information literacy of 455 students. While there were no significant differences between those who had instruction and those who did not, a regression analysis revealed that experiences with research projects and use of library books did predict whether or not a student passed the information literacy test.

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