Assessment in Action

University of Connecticut Health Center: Project Description

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Primary Outcome Examined (select one or more)

Student Learning: Assignment

(No) Student Learning: Course

(No) Student Learning: Major

(No) Student Learning: Degree

Student Engagement

Student Success

(No) Academic Intimacy/Rapport

(No) Enrollment

(No) Retention

(No) Completion

(No) Graduation

(No) Articulation

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


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)

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

Other (please describe)

Medical students and medical residents

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)

Professions/Applied Sciences

(No) English Composition

(No) General Education

(No) Information Literacy Credit Course

Other (please describe)

Health Science Professions

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

Library Administrator

Other Librarian

Other (please describe)

Director of Medical Education

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Methods and Tools (select one or more)


(No) Interviews

(No) Focus Group(s)

(No) Observation

(No) Pre/Post Test

(No) Rubric

Other (please describe)

Survey asked medical students to volunteer comments about library use, clinical resources and instructional sessions led by reference librarians

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)

Health Science Literature - Search Behaviors

Indirect Data Type (select one or more)

(No) Test Scores

(No) GPA

(No) Degree Completion Rate

(No) Retention Rate

Other (please describe)

Development of clinical reasoning skills

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. UCHC librarians provide reference, instructional services and biomedical collections that support teaching and learning in medicine, patient care and biomedical research. Getting direct feedback from library users about adequacy of training, services and collections is vital data to collect, over years.

    Reference librarians instruct students on best practices for searching. Feedback from students allows instructors to improve classroom training for future groups. The library collection is continually being evaluated to ensure that purchasing decisions focus on “best” sources for these users; survey comments about database usage contribute to effective collection management.

    These surveys asked users to describe use of Library subscription resources, search strategies, and whether the instructional services that librarians provide contributed to their development as lifelong learners.

    On the project team were faculty, course directors, administrators and three librarians. As collaborators we shared information to create improved instructional sessions for the purpose of finding evidence-based sources.

  • 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. Librarians and administrators are vitally interested in ways that library services, collections and training support medical education. Surveying our users is one way to ask “how are we doing?" in this endeavor.

    Being information-literate and ready for lifelong learning is one of the required Core Competencies promulgated by the AAMC and Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). To ask our students about their use of medical literature and sources allows librarians to learn more about the adequacy of library-training and collections, and to improve these services for future students.

    The project team, by initiating a Library-EBM Survey, collaborated effectively and used the survey data gathered to improve instruction for these graduate students.

    Medical students, while being interconnected 24x7 on their laptops or iPhones, need instructional time with reference librarians throughout the early years of their graduate study in order to get an overview of medical literature, search strategies and clinical reasoning. Librarians are expert on these topics, and our work with students contributes to their development as lifelong learners.

  • 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. School of Medicine faculty and administrators who were AiA project team members have asked that librarians continue to do the Library-Evidence Based Medicine Survey of students and residents in future years, so as to continue to collect feedback and input from these groups about their use of library collections, instruction and reference services.

    A survey of medical students by librarians had been done in the past (1998-2006) and the revival of the Library-Evidence Based Medicine Survey is a positive step towards ensuring that UConn Health Library continues to provide a quality collection of research and clinical information sources, and that instruction is well-tailored to the learning or research needs of these core community groups (medical students and residents).

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

  1. Project Team Leader: Kathleen Crea, MLS, 6th Year, AHIP
    Information & Education Services Librarian
    Lyman Maynard Stowe Library
    University of Connecticut Health Center
    PO Box 4003
    Farmington, CT 06034-4003

    UConn AiA Project Website:

    Presentation about Survey Results given at the 2013 Northeast Group on Education Affairs (NEGEA) Annual Retreat by Ms. Crea. NEGEA is sponsored by the American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC).The presentation was given on April 12, 2013 at Weill-Cornell Medical College, New York, NY.

    See 2013 NEGEA Website for program information, at:

In Their Own Words: Effective Search Behaviors by Medical Students and Residents at the University of Connecticut Health Center

Surveys gathered data from students and residents about library use; this information provided librarians and administrators insight into how different populations use medical literature. The Assessment in Action research project at UConn brought groups of librarians and faculty together in effective, functional collaboration. Our project demonstrates that multi-disciplinary educational teams can improve teaching and learning in medicine.