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Powering Achievement: The Impact of Libraries & Librarians on Academic Achievement, Calgary 2011
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Powering Achievement: The Impact of Libraries & Librarians on Academic Achievement, Calgary 2011

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  • 1. Powering Achievement Keith Curry Lance Keith Curry Lance – RSL Research Group – Louisville, Colorado 303-466-1860 – keithlance@comcast.net – www.RSLresearch.com The Impact of Libraries and Librarians on Academic Achievement
  • 2. Outline
    • Background
      • Previous/recent studies
      • Intervening trends
    • Results
      • Library predictors
      • Control factors
      • Educator voices
    • Implications
      • Recommended actions
      • What you can do
  • 3. Previous Research
    • 1950s-1980 ’ s
    • Mostly experimental research
    • Findings
      • Resources—staff, collections, technology
      • Librarian as teacher
      • Teacher & principal support
  • 4. First Colorado Study (1992-93)
    • School Match: Schools with better-funded libraries tend to have higher test scores.
    • The Big Question: How do we know it ’ s better-funded libraries & not schools?
  • 5. First Colorado Study Findings
    • Predictors of test scores include:
      • Size of library staff and collection
      • Librarian ’ s instructional role
      • Library expenditures
    • Controlled for school and community differences
  • 6. Why Replicate Study?
    • Three “ tidal waves ” of change affecting libraries and schools between 1 st & 2 nd CO studies:
      • Thinking about school librarianship
      • Technology
      • Testing
  • 7. Challenge to Recent Studies
    • Take into account these changes and …
    • Get message beyond “ the choir ”
      • 2002 White House Conference
      • Strong Libraries, Strong Scores
      • Washington Moms
  • 8. Schools & Libraries Studied
    • Since 2000, 20 states
      • AK, CO, DE, FL, IA, ID, IL, IN, MA, MI, MN, MO, NC, NM, NY, OH, OR, PA, TX, WI … and Ontario
    • 10,000+ schools
    • Elementary, middle and high
    • 3 million+ students
  • 9. Library Predictors of Academic Achievement
    • Student scores tend to rise with library staff hours
    • Credentialed staff
      • MA/BA degrees
      • Teacher certification
      • Library endorsement
    • Other staff
      • Library aides
      • Technology aides
  • 10. Library Predictors of Academic Achievement
    • Learning &
    • Teaching
    • Student scores tend to rise as librarians spend more time
      • Planning with teachers
      • Co-teaching
      • Teaching ICT literacy (21 st Century skills) to students
      • Providing in-service to teachers
  • 11. Library Predictors of Academic Achievement
    • Info Access &
    • Delivery
    • Student scores tend to rise as librarians spend more time:
      • Developing collections
      • Identifying resources for teachers
      • Motivating students to read
  • 12. Library Predictors of Academic Achievement
    • Program
    • Administration
    • Student scores tend to rise as librarians spend more time:
      • Meeting with principal
      • Attending faculty meetings
      • Serving on key committees
      • Meeting with other school librarians
  • 13. Library Predictors of Academic Achievement
    • Student scores tend to rise with library hours & usage.
    • School library hours of operation
      • Before, during & after school
      • Flexible access/scheduling
    • School library usage
      • Group visits
      • Individual visits
      • Both for ICT literacy (21 st Century skills)
  • 14. Library Predictors of Academic Achievement
    • Student scores tend to rise with access to computers
      • In library
      • Elsewhere in school
    • Access to
      • Library catalogs
      • Licensed databases
      • State-funded databases
      • Internet/Web
  • 15. The Latest Results: sample Illinois findings
    • Students tend to score higher at schools with more:
      • Library staffing (+17-18% ES, MS)
      • Flex scheduling (+10-11% ES)
      • Collaborating librarians & teachers (+8% ES)
  • 16. The Latest Results: more Illinois findings
    • Students tend to score higher at schools with more:
      • Current collections (+13-14% MS)
      • Computers/100 students (+8-11% MS)
      • Library spending (+5% ES -- +12% HS)
      • Circulation (+11%, ES)
      • Group visits (+9-10%, MS)
  • 17. Controlling for Other School & Community Conditions
    • School library factor
      • Staffing, collections, expenditures
    • Other school conditions
      • Per pupil spending
      • Teacher-pupil ratio
    • Community conditions
      • Poverty (NSLP eligibility)
      • Minority enrollment
      • Adult education (age 25+ HS grads)
  • 18. Academic Achievement Predictors Ranked
    • Ranked by % of test score variation explained:
    • Poverty (NSLP eligibility): 50-65%
    • School library development : up to 15%, typically 3-5%
    • Variables that don ’ t explain test scores consistently :
    • Adult education
    • Minority enrollment
    • Per pupil spending
    • Teacher-pupil ratio
  • 19. The Latest Results: sample Idaho findings
    • Students tend to score higher where administrators consider it essential for librarians to:
      • Offer flexible access to library
      • Collaborate with teachers
      • Provide professional development to teachers
      • Serve on committees
      • Meet with principal
        • Advanced scores double or better
  • 20. The Latest Results: sample Idaho findings
    • Students tend to score higher where teachers report librarians more frequently providing
      • Instructional resources
      • Instructional collaboration (especially involving technology)
      • Professional development
        • Advanced scores 15-20% higher
  • 21. The Latest Results: sample Idaho findings
    • Students tend to score higher where librarians report more frequently providing teachers with
      • Instructional resources
      • Instructional collaboration (especially in classroom)
      • Professional development
        • Advanced scores 25-36% higher
  • 22. Recommended Actions
    • Staff school libraries well.
    • Stock them with current books, databases & Internet computers.
    • Fund them to support school ’ s curriculum, standards, and 21 st Century skills.
    • Adopt flexible scheduling.
    • Utilize computer network to extend library ’ s reach into classrooms.

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