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Assessing information literacy attainment - Paul Verlander & Jo Kennedy


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Presented at LILAC 2016

Published in: Education
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Assessing information literacy attainment - Paul Verlander & Jo Kennedy

  1. 1. Themes • Why assess Information Literacy? • How to create a portable re-usable assessment • How assessment can critically inform your teaching
  2. 2. The context
  3. 3. Why assess information literacy? • Buy in from new departments key to embedding IL • IL programme mapped to module learning outcomes / Engineering Council accreditation • Demonstrating importance of IL learning outcomes to programmes
  4. 4. Engineering Council (2011). The accreditation of Higher Education programmes: UK standard for professional engineering competence. London, United Kingdom: Author.
  5. 5. Why assess Information Literacy? The challenges of teaching IL to STEM students! © Matthew Stinson. Uploaded on October 24 2005 (CC BY-NC 2.0) ©Oliver Tacke. Taken on February 19, 2014, (CC BY 2.0) Image courtesy of khunaspix at
  6. 6. How to create a portable re-usable assessment – the context • Professional Skills for Science & Engineering identified for Level 4 IL input • Content and planning for the module needed fast! • Opportunity to shape delivery Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at
  7. 7. Professional skills for Scientists & Engineers Short fat module teaching a range of core skills 4 sessions delivered: Information Sources, Knovel, Using the free web, referencing ©Shaun Fisher Test Tubes, Sept 4 2014, (CC BY 2.0) ©IBM Research. Sunflower Receiver CAD, Sept 16 2014, (CC BY-ND 2.0) ©Ewa Rozkosz, Information Literacy, Aug 2 2011, (CC BY-SA 2.0)
  8. 8. How to create a portable re-usable assessment – the mechanics • Explicitly linked to faculty assessment criteria • Can migrate into existing assessment without change • Can be marked separately (by library staff) • Thematically linked to subject area but focused exclusively on cross-disciplinary skills • For Professional Skills, IL assessment thematically linked to lab report assessment
  9. 9. Source identification Search strategy Identifying appropriate search source Source evaluation Referencing
  10. 10. Analysis of engineers’ results 14/15 Comparable attainment = robustness of assessment? • Any students who failed the IL component also failed host assessment 67% 29% 4% 33% Marking comparison to host assessment Same grade category Different grade category (< 10%) Different grade category (between 10 and 12%)
  11. 11. Critically informing teaching • More interesting was deeper reflection on work produced • Analysis of scripts identified areas where teaching could be changed to improve understanding: • How taught sessions are sequenced • What content is delivered • How content is thematically linked
  12. 12. Critically informing teaching • Greater focus now placed on contextualising use of the free web: • How it relates to library resources • The importance of appropriate depth as well as provenance ©Blue Valley West Library. Taken on February 2, 2014. (CC BY-SA 2.0) .
  13. 13. Next steps • 2nd year - migration into a new assessment (industrial portfolio) • Marking complete as of Feb 2016 for 2nd roll-out • Analysis comparing attainment to attendance • Planned roll-out to further subjects 2016/17 Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at