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Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
Using assessment to shape information literacy goals
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Using assessment to shape information literacy goals

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Presented at the SUNY Librarians Association Annual Conference, June 18, 2010 …

Presented at the SUNY Librarians Association Annual Conference, June 18, 2010

Assessment of student learning is only useful if it informs instructional and program goals. At SUNY Geneseo’s Milne Library, librarians defined clear goals and objectives for a required information literacy session conducted in each first year writing seminar. After the original goals and objectives were defined, students in the first year writing seminar completed a pre and post assessment consisting of multiple choice questions, attitudinal questions, and research questions designed to get students to search for and find various information resources. Based on these results, librarians were able to assess their teaching techniques and the relevance of the defined learning outcomes.

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  • This is the story of how we used our assessment results to revise our goals and objectives for the one-shot course we teach in a freshman writing seminar
  • • Nature of the course and library instruction ◦ Expectations - set students up for the rest of the research they will do at college.  Point them to the books, point them to the databases, all set.
  • • Setting the goals - 50 minutes ◦ In 2007,  we set out to assess student learning of INTD 105 info lit skills. ◦ At the time we had three broad info lit goals that hadn’t been examined in a few years.  We had to revise this to make things a bit more assessable ◦ Our process - Collaborative ◦ Challenges ▪ Not proscribing the lesson, but the outcomes ▪ Because it was just 50 minutes, we felt that we didn't have the time to get into upper order skills like evaluation ▪ How do we deal with faculty requests? ▪ We had survey data from the faculty, but we didn't directly consult faculty.
  • • Assessing our goals - ◦ 2008-2009 ◦ Pre and post test of goals and objectives ◦ The assessment tool ▪ Multiple choice ▪ Short answer, “Find this article” ▪ Plus some attitudinal questions ▪ Threw in some questions on upper order skills, just to see what they knew and to take advantage of the opportunity to test their skills
  • ▪ Results ▪ Improved awareness of ILL services ▪ Difficulty accessing our subject guides, with little improvement ▪ From the beginning, they had an awareness of basic services like circulation, tech help and reference (subsequent assessment indicates that these library services aren’t their first thought) ▪ Navigation of the website is largely a usability issue ▪ Changes ▪ Elements kept: understanding of ILL services, awareness of help services available (self-service and mediated) ▪ Elements scrapped: website navigation ▪ Navigation of the website is largely a usability issue (our assessment revealed some difficulty for students in finding our subject guides, something we are still trying to work on) ▪ Do we really want to spend what little time we have showing students the website?
  • ▪ Changes ▪ Elements kept: understanding of ILL services, awareness of help services available (self-service and mediated) ▪ Elements scrapped: website navigation ▪ Navigation of the website is largely a usability issue (our assessment revealed some difficulty for students in finding our subject guides, something we are still trying to work on) ▪ Do we really want to spend what little time we have showing students the website?
  • ◦ Goal 2: Use GLOCAT (our OPAC) to locate a variety of materials in Milne Library ▪ Results: ▪ They didn’t know and never learned the details of what was in our online catalog (biggest problem - articles) ▪ But they could search, find (by author or title) and read results screens (including determining item type and accessing full text of electronic items) ▪ They learned where basic materials were held in Milne Library ▪ Changes ▪ We still want them to know what kinds of material can be found through our primary search tool.  Although this has been changing (GLOCAT -> Worldcat Local -> IDS Search) ▪ We don’t spend time on the basic mechanics of a specific search tool
  • ▪ Changes ▪ We still want them to know what kinds of material can be found through our primary search tool.  Although this has been changing (GLOCAT -> Worldcat Local -> IDS Search) ▪ We don’t spend time on the basic mechanics of a specific search tool
  • ◦ Goal 3: Selecting databases, finding articles, finding full text ▪ Results: ▪ When given a list, they could make good decisions about which database to use.  But they had difficulty finding resources we recommended via our website (little improvement at the end of the semester). ▪ They know that databases aren’t the best choice for scholarly material, even at the beginning. ▪ When given free range to select a database, most simply picked the search box on the library homepage ▪ Improvement in their ability to determine if the library has the full text of articles from a journal. ▪ Changes: ▪ Re-arranged, but left largely in tact
  • ◦ We added some additional questions that went beyond our original goals and objectives, just to get a sense of where the students were. ◦ Students had trouble with evaluating sources, something we left out of our goals for the 50 minute one shot. ▪ Scholarly vs. popular ▪ Item type
  • ◦ We realized ◦ What do we skip when we just have 50 minutes. ◦ What do we feel so strongly about that we just have to include it.
  • Recap - we removed an emphasis on navigating the website, we removed an emphasis on the mechanics of search tools. We want to try to teach them how to evaluate what they find. Because here’s the thing: you can find scholarly research articles in google, if you know what to look for, and lots of us start our searches there, I know I do.
  • • Assessing our new goals ◦ Assessment at the end of the Spring 2010 semester ◦ Refining our questions to answer the follow up questions from the first assessment. ▪ Example: Getting help.   ▪ In the first assessment, it was a multiple choice question with the reference desk as the clear answer. ▪ In our newest one, ◦ How folks did.
  • Transcript

    • 1. Using assessment to shape information literacy goals <ul><li>Bonnie J. M. Swoger </li></ul><ul><li>SUNY Geneseo </li></ul><ul><li>SUNYLA 2010 Conference </li></ul><ul><li>SUNY Brockport, June 17, 2010 </li></ul>
    • 2. <ul><li>Assessment is only useful if you do something with the information collected. </li></ul>
    • 3. <ul><li>One shot instruction in a freshman writing seminar </li></ul><ul><li>50 or 75 minutes </li></ul>
    • 4. <ul><li>Make them assessable </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative process </li></ul><ul><li>Not proscribing the lesson, but the outcomes </li></ul><ul><li>Faculty survey </li></ul>Setting our Original Goals
    • 5. The assessment <ul><li>2008-2009 school year </li></ul><ul><li>Pre and Post assessment of first year students </li></ul><ul><li>Multiple choice, attitudinal, and research questions </li></ul>
    • 6. Results
    • 7. <ul><li>Goal 1: Access Library resources and services by successfully navigating the Milne Library website. </li></ul>
    • 8. <ul><li>No more guided tours of the library website </li></ul><ul><li>Retained a focus on ILL services </li></ul>Changes to Goal 1
    • 9. <ul><li>Goal 2: Use GLOCAT to locate a variety of materials in Milne Library. </li></ul>
    • 10. <ul><li>Reduced emphasis on the mechanics of any particular database </li></ul><ul><li>We still want students to learn what kinds of materials can be found through our primary search tool </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(challenging, because it has changed recently) </li></ul></ul>Changes to Goal 2
    • 11. <ul><li>Goal 3: Use research tools and strategies to identify and locate periodical articles on a specific topic. </li></ul>
    • 12. <ul><li>Re-arranged, but left largely in tact </li></ul>Changes to Goal 3
    • 13. <ul><li>Assessing things we weren’t trying to teach them </li></ul>
    • 14. <ul><li>Assessing not just student learning, but the appropriateness of our goals and objectives </li></ul>
    • 15. <ul><li>Scholarly vs. Popular </li></ul><ul><li>Usefulness of different types of resources </li></ul>Additional Changes
    • 16. It’s a cycle...

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