Assessment in Action

University of Idaho: 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

Student Success

(No) Academic Intimacy/Rapport

(No) Enrollment


(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

(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)

(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

(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

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

(No) Information/Academic Technology

Student Affairs

(No) Campus Administrator

(No) Library Administrator

(No) Other Librarian

Other (please describe)

Director of General 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) Other (please describe)

Pre and post essays with bibliographies

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

Retention Rate

(No) Other (please describe)

surveys of confidence and perception of the library

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. Our institution puts a high priority on retention of first-year students and the library does a lot of instruction for them. We wanted to see if library instruction was contributing to student progress on the learning outcomes and to retention. Research question: What impact does information literacy instruction for first-year students have on research skills, confidence and retention? Our team consisted of faculty and staff in General Education, composition and student services, all who focus on first-year students and retention.

  • 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 project research is not complete as retention data cannot be obtained until Fall 2014. However, our analysis of bibliographies and surveys shows that students improved research skills and had increased confidence in research after library sessions. Positive perceptions of the library also increased. A literature review shows associations with student success and retention from instruction programs like ours. To date, our project has significantly increased the library’s role in assessment of General Education. The revised General Education program was just beginning its assessment program and our collaboration at this time will ensure our inclusion in future General Education assessment. This helps establish the library as an integral part of the campus culture of assessment of student learning outcomes, rather than an auxiliary unit assessing its own objectives.

  • 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. The library will now be included in General Education assessment and recognized as part of academic learning outcomes assessment. The results of forthcoming retention analysis may also further engage the library in campus assessment and development of retention programs. Personally, I have learned a great deal about improving assessment practices and reporting which will help our library continue to improve our assessment methods.

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


    A presention on part of this project, titled "Making Information Literacy Assessment Sustainable through Collaboration," will be given at Library Instruction West, July 23-25, 2014, in Portland, OR

Assessment of Library Instruction within General Education Learning Outcomes and Academic Support Programs: Determining Impact on Retention

The U-Idaho Library collaborated with General Education & Academic Support to assess library instruction, Fall’13. A faculty team used rubrics to rate pre & post instruction essays & bibliographies from first-year seminars. Mean bibliography ratings rose from 1.73 to 2.5. In Academic Support classes, library confidence increased 80%. Retention will be analyzed Fall’14. The AiA project folded library instruction into UI Gen Ed learning outcomes assessment.