Assessment in Action

University of Maryland-University College: Project Description

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Primary Outcome Examined (select one or more)

(No) Student Learning: Assignment

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) Reference

(No) Educational Role (other than reference or instruction)

(No) Space, Physical

(No) Discovery (library resources integrated in institutional web and other information portals)

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

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)

(No) Assessment Office

(No) Institutional Research

Teaching Faculty

(No) Writing Center

Information/Academic Technology

(No) Student Affairs

(No) Campus Administrator

(No) Library Administrator

(No) Other Librarian

Other (please describe)

Academic director, course chair (subject expert)

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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

(No) Other (please describe)

Direct Data Type (select one or more)

(No) Student Portfolio

Research Paper/Project

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

(No) Other (please describe)

Indirect Data Type (select one or more)

(No) Test Scores

(No) GPA

(No) Degree Completion Rate

(No) Retention Rate

Other (please describe)

course instructor feedback

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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. The UMUC Undergraduate School is looking at how what is taught/learned contributes to workplace preparedness. The October 2012 Project Information Literacy report discussed how new college graduates are not demonstrating information literacy skills needed to be effective in their jobs. This project was to demonstrate innovation in contributing to student learning success and retention efforts for non-traditional undergraduates in the distance learning environment through information literacy skill building, serving as a model for other institutions. The primary inquiry was to demonstrate how the library, working in collaboration with the academic director, subject expert(s), and course developers in the creation/revision of undergraduate, adult distance learner Political Science/Government courses, intentionally integrating information literacy and critical thinking skills as well as appropriate resources and services into the course content and classroom experience, contributes to student success and retention in meeting the learning outcomes of the course and those of the university.

  • 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. Based on course instructor feedback and student assessment survey data the following was learned. Inclusion of a specialized course resources guide of relevant databases, web sites, and back ground reading as well as citation assistance provided students with higher quality research materials needed to be successful in completion of the major authentic assessment research paper. Completion of a standardized exercise that provided each student with an opportunity to begin the initial exploration of their research topic with the embedded librarian available to provide individualized feedback ensured that the student was on the right track in locating and using high quality relevant research resources. Providing a central location for students to pose questions/comments regarding their research and having the embedded librarian available as a resource gave students another avenue to receive individualized research assistance to further help improve the quality of their research.

  • 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. While the original project was based on a broader application and unexpected new major university-wide initiatives prevented the completion of the project as originally envisioned, lessons were learned that have future application, although more research will be needed on this topic: Embedded librarians have much to offer in the asynchronous, adult learner distance learning environment, but strategic choices are needed for scalability, balancing staffing against course offerings. Stand-alone information literacy instruction with user interaction is one scalability method. Creating a resource guide of relevant materials in a variety of formats with citation and research assistance is an example. Selecting a variety of assessments to gain a better idea of the success of such initiatives is important. More subject courses should be included to further test the question and determine overall best practices and scalability solutions.

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

  1. Course Resources Guide created for the project:
    Resource Guide for GVPT 408 (Counterterrorism):

Long Night Against Procrastination: the Fully Supported All-Nighter

Modeled after the original Long Night Against Procrastination (LNAP) in Germany, LNAP events at the University of Manitoba bring proper academic research and writing support to the “all-nighter” experience. Various forms of evaluation in preparation for this poster look at the success of LNAPs in supporting students in this unique way.