Assessment in Action (AiA) – An update from Nastasha E. Johnson at Purdue University Libraries

 Assessment in Action, General, Library Impact on Students  Comments Off on Assessment in Action (AiA) – An update from Nastasha E. Johnson at Purdue University Libraries
Oct 122015
Natasha Johnson, librarian at the Math library. New faculty Purdue Libraries postcard (Mark Simons / Purdue University)

Natasha Johnson, librarian at the Math library. New faculty Purdue Libraries postcard (Mark Simons / Purdue University)

We asked participants in ACRL’s Assessment in Action (AiA) to share a few thoughts on their experience. Here is what Nastasha E. Johnson, Physical and Mathematical Sciences Information Specialist at the
Purdue University Libraries had to say about her project: “Embedded information literacy within an introduction to design process course: successive citation analyses and student reflections as an assessment of learning“:

Abstract: In this study, 160 students’ bibliographic work is analyzed over 3 assignments, and coupled with students’ successive perceptions of their IL skills over the course. Triangulation between themes in students’ IL skill perception, demonstrated citation analysis, and graded performance will be discussed. This project, supported by the Assessment In Action national initiative, was designed to inform the campus community and the larger library community about the impact of embedded library instruction on student performance and students’ IL skills perceived and actual.

1. What was your greatest challenge during the course of your Assessment in Action project? The greatest challenge during this process was managing a large amount of data, while working toward meaning both quantitatively and qualitatively. However, by pursuing both quantitative and qualitative meaning, I believe this project’s findings were strengthened. Our quantitative data obviously looked at students’ academic work performance. By seeking qualitative data, however, we specifically asked students to reflect and evaluate their skills throughout the project, which allowed instructors and librarians to reflect on their own instruction and performance.

2. What is your #1 recommendation for other librarians who want to conduct an assessment project on student learning and success? I recommend using several instructors and several sections of the same course in order to gain a more accurate picture of learning objectives and actual student performance. Also, by working with several instructors, a sense of unity and teamwork forms throughout the project and continues after the course concludes.

3. What is the #1 thing you gained through your participation in Assessment in Action? I felt extremely encouraged as a result of this study, which showed statistical significance in students’ academic growth, development, and competence in their information literacy skills as a result of the librarian cooperation with professors. I also gained the confidence to talk to stakeholders and campus administrators about library assessment and library impacts.

Thank you Nastasha for the great project!


Council of Independent Colleges + ACRL Value Committee

 Communicating Value, General  Comments Off on Council of Independent Colleges + ACRL Value Committee
Aug 272015

This blog post is one in a series of posts discussing the library value work being done by the ACRL Liaisons to non-library higher education organizations. The following post from Lis Cabot who writes about her liaison work with the Council of Independent Colleges.

The Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) is an association of nonprofit independent colleges and universities that works to advance institutional quality and increase awareness of the contributions of small and mid-size private institutions to society.  ACRL has co-sponsored many initiatives with the CIC. The Council was a co-sponsor of ACRL’s IMLS grant in support of the Value of Academic Libraries initiative. CIC also offers scholarships for college library directors to attend the ALA Annual Conference.    As the ACRL Liaison to CIC, I attend an annual Chief Academic Officers Institute where I offer programming that highlights the contributions of academic libraries to institutional effectiveness. Recent institutes have included Chief Student Affairs Officers and Chief Financial Affairs Officers. I shared examples of CIC member libraries collaborative campus projects with the Chief Student Affairs Officers. As a major employer of student workers, academic libraries contribute to student retention and recruitment. Several libraries develop residence hall programming and cultural activities. I find these administrators to be very interested in evolving library services, resources, and physical spaces.

Academic officers tend to be natural supporters of libraries and look to librarians for evidence of our contributions to teaching and learning success, as well as to institutional mission.   They are keenly interested in collaborative initiatives whereby academic libraries partner with other campus units.   Deans and provosts frequently cite budget challenges and applaud our efforts in the areas of resource sharing and consortia initiatives.   CIC goals align nicely with ACRL’s Strategic Goals in the Plan for Excellence. CIC is interested in making the case for independent higher education and fostering institutional effectiveness. Academic libraries work to demonstrate alignment with institutional outcomes.   CIC also focuses on forming collaborations to create and strengthen institutional programs. ACRL and academic libraries seek to leverage partnerships in support of mutual goals. CIC assists institutions in improving their educational offerings, administrative and financial performance, and visibility. This focus aligns nicely with ACRL’s goal of accelerating the transition to a more open system of scholarship and promotion of new structures that reward and value open scholarship.

CIC has also offered an annual workshop on Information Fluency in the Disciplines. Teams of faculty, librarians, and academic administrators from CIC schools are selected to participate in the workshops. During the workshop, the institutional teams focus on the development of local initiatives that introduce and reinforce information fluency skills in academic programs and/or academic disciplines. I facilitate some of the working sessions at the workshop and work with individual teams. I enjoy working with the teams and field inquiries post-workshop from several participants. I highlighted ACRL’s work on revisions to the Information Literacy Standards for Higher Education at the workshops. I also co-presented on institutional approaches to “Developing Information Fluency Across the Four Years”. I highlight the collaborative approach we use at Ithaca College, engaging disciplinary faculty in the identification of core student learning outcomes linked to specific library resources and services. As a result of my participation the workshop, I have been invited to a CIC member campus to present on our approach and to work with a group of faculty and librarians.

I report on my CIC activities to the College Library Section’s Executive Committee at Midwinter and Annual Conferences.   I have also forwarded relevant information to ACRL’s Strategic Goal Committees.

The ACRL-CIC relationship continues to be an opportunity for collaboration and engagement.   Given that CIC member institutions are small to medium-sized colleges and universities, they naturally focus on creating a compelling undergraduate experience. CIC academic officers and faculty continue to welcome and support the contributions of their libraries.



Libraries and High Impact Educational Practices

 Events, General, Library Impact on Students  Comments Off on Libraries and High Impact Educational Practices
Aug 172015

There is an ACRL eLearning webcast titled “Collaborating for Student Success: Libraries and High Impact Educational Practices” on Wednesday, August 26, 2015.

The description of the webcast:

In 2008 the Association of American Colleges and Universities published High-Impact Educational Practices by George D. Kuh.  These high-impact practices (HIPs) have been well-researched and proven to contribute to student success and retention.  Because of their success, HIPs have been implemented at many colleges and universities across the U.S.  At the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG), high Impact practices were extensively used in developing the most recent strategic plan. Librarians at UNCG were quite involved in the strategic planning process and collaborated closely with Academic and Student Affairs to implement the plan. To provide solid evidence of how the Libraries support high impact practices, we prepared an extensive report with very specific examples of our Libraries’ involvement with each practice.  Data for an academic year were also included to illustrate the extent of the Library’s contributions to student success.  The report was distributed widely on campus so that the Chancellor, Provost, academic Deans and other campus leaders would be well-informed of the Libraries’ significant value and impact on student success.

This interactive webcast will provide a review of research on how high impact practices foster student success nationally. Then, using learning communities (LCs) as a case study, it will provide information on how LCs contribute to student retention and success.  It will also recommend strategies for partnering with other campus units to promote high impact practices and then use the results to demonstrate the value and impact of the library on its campus.

Learn more and register at

© 2014 ACRL Value of Academic Libraries Suffusion theme by Sayontan Sinha