Assessment in Action

Dakota 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: Games

(No) Instruction: One Shot

(No) Instruction: Course Embedded

Instruction: Self-Paced Tutorials


(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) Undergraduate


(No) Incoming

(No) Graduating

(No) Pre-College/Developmental/Basic Skills

(No) Other (please describe)

Discipline (select one or more)

(No) Arts

(No) Humanities

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

(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

(No) Campus Administrator

(No) Library Administrator

Other Librarian

(No) Other (please describe)

Page 2


Methods and Tools (select one or more)

(No) Survey

(No) Interviews

(No) Focus Group(s)

(No) Observation

Pre/Post Test

(No) Rubric

Other (please describe)

Worksheet Position Paper grade

Direct Data Type (select one or more)

(No) Student Portfolio

Research Paper/Project

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)

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. This project set out to discover how the library effects on the learning and research skills of online, Education graduate students within the Masters in Educational Technology program. Assessment of undergraduates’ Information Literacy skills has been done for several years at the University, but nothing formalized had occurred within the graduate program. Drawing on a recent revision of an online tutorial completed by students within a research methods class, this project set out to assess the learning done by those students. In addition to these graduate students, another course was also assessed as the students utilized the library for additional coursework. The team was composed of a librarian, two faculty members teaching within courses that required use of the library’s resources, and the director of Institutional Effectiveness and Assessment. Each brought a different experience and knowledge to the project.

  • 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. An important lesson learned from this project is the fact that when assessing the effect of the library on student learning, the library cannot do it alone. It takes the work of others within the university to truly to the work to collect meaningful data and analyze the effect. It is also important that the results are seen by more than those in the library. Student learning is one effect of the work of the library, but unless that effect is known and understood by the larger university, it will not have the full impact. When faculty members and administrators see the results of an assessment project, they are able to fully appreciate the work the library does to support student success. This also puts the library into the position to fuller the larger assessment work of the university, as one project will often lead to other projects.

  • 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 has provided one of the first attempts to provide direct assessment of a learning objective set forth within the graduate program goals, “Students will be proficient in finding, evaluating, and using current educational research to support continuous improvement in their profession.” This is important as they can often be overlooked as there are not a large number of students within the program and they take their courses online. The University would be able to take this information showing improvement in this objective and use it to push toward assessment of the other objectives within the program.

    Within the library, this assessment shows the positive effect the library has upon these students. This provides the data to support continual effort and time to work with them. It also provides a means to continue the relationship built with the course faculty to offer information literacy instruction to the classes.

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

  1. “Assessing Student Learning: Lessons Learned from the ACRL ‘Assessment in Action: Academic Libraries and Student Success’ Program.” South Dakota Library Association Annual Conference. Pierre, SD. October 2014.

    Mary Francis – Librarian Team Lead
    Dakota State University
    820 N Washington AVE
    Madison, SD 57042

The Karl E. Mundt Library and the Flanking Maneuver: Assessing the Deployment of Different Instructional Approaches in the Battle to Reach Online Graduate Students

This poster looks at the effect the library has upon the research knowledge and skills of online, graduate Education students. Students received instruction through either an online tutorial assessed with a pre/posttest and worksheet or through personal contact with a librarian assessed by grades on a research paper. Improvements were seen in both instructional methods with statistical significance found in the pre/posttest.