Assessment in Action

Fairfield 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)

Other (please describe)

Academic Integrity Assessment

Primary Library Factor Examined (select one or more)


(No) Instruction: Games

(No) Instruction: One Shot

Instruction: Course Embedded

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) 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 Experience Program

AiA Team Members (select one or more)

Assessment Office

(No) Institutional Research

Teaching Faculty

Writing Center

(No) Information/Academic Technology

Student Affairs

(No) Campus Administrator

(No) Library Administrator

(No) Other Librarian

Other (please describe)

New Student Programs

Page 2


Methods and Tools (select one or more)

(No) Survey

(No) Interviews

(No) Focus Group(s)

(No) Observation

Pre/Post Test


(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)

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. Since 2009, the DiMenna-Nyselius Library has been actively involved with Fairfield University’s academic integrity initiatives, resulting in the Library's recognition as a leading campus resource on academic integrity. We believe that academic libraries - through faculty workshops, information literacy classes, and student learning modules - can be a major contributor to solving the complex problem of academic dishonesty.

    The goals of the AiA research are to determine the effect of library-created learning modules on first-years’ (a) understanding of academic integrity, and (b) knowledge/skills for citing sources to avoid plagiarism. The two modules embedded into the First Year Experience program are:
    • Academic Integrity Classroom Lesson, assessed by a graded essay rubric
    • Online Avoiding Plagiarism Tutorial, assessed with a multiple choice test

    Fairfield’s team consists of librarian team leader Jacalyn Kremer, Elizabeth Boquet-Writing Center Director, Kamala Kiem-New Student Programs Director, Christine Siegel-Associate V-President of Academic Affairs, Assessment.

  • 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. Our findings include:

    1. The Academic Integrity Classroom Lesson developed by the Library and taught in the First Year Experience program positively impacts first year students’ ability to relate academic integrity practices to their own behaviors and identify solutions to their own behaviors. Students’ knowledge of shared responsibility in academic integrity and expectations of the Honor Code were weak.

    2. Avoiding Plagiarism Tutorial results indicate first-year students come to us with solid conceptual knowledge about plagiarism, although the assessment results indicate their ability to apply that knowledge is weaker. Their paraphrasing skills need improvement.

  • 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. Next Steps:

    1. In summer 2014, the Academic Integrity Classroom Lesson will be modified to include concepts of shared responsibility and expectations of the Honor Code. An exciting result of this AiA assessment is all First-Years will now participate in a communal Honor Code signing ceremony in fall 2014.

    2. The Avoiding Plagiarism Tutorial will be redesigned in summer 2014. Particular emphasis will be on paraphrasing skills. Further research will be done to determine the best way to teach applied paraphrasing skills.

    3. The Library will continue its partnership with the First Year Experience program, with follow-up assessments expected next year.

    4. As a result of the AiA collaboration, the librarian team leader has been asked to be on the University Assessment Committee.

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

  1. Jacalyn Kremer
    Head of Academic Library Partnerships and Assessment
    DiMenna-Nyselius Library
    Fairfield University

    203-254-4000 (ext 2587)

    More information on Library academic integrity work available at

Honor Bound: Assessing Library Interventions to the Complex Problem of Academic Integrity

The goal is to determine the effect of library created learning modules on first-years’ (a) understanding of academic integrity, and (b) knowledge/skills for citing sources to avoid plagiarism. The two learning modules and assessment tools are: • Academic Integrity Classroom Lesson (Graded Essay Rubric) • Online Plagiarism Tutorial (Multiple Choice Test) Results led to university-wide changes to Honor Code signing and new emphasis on paraphrasing skills.