Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Improving Student Information Literacy Skills

High five to the Rio Salado Library team for its efforts to improve students’ Information Literacy skills!

In 2010, when Information Literacy was formally adopted as a college-wide student learning outcome, the Library Faculty Chair began collecting baseline data on students’ online research proficiency by administering the Research Readiness Self-Assessment (RRSA). This test measured how well students could obtain and evaluate online information, as well as their understanding of plagiarism.

Baseline data indicated that students were performing below college-level (college-level is defined as 70% or better). Armed with these data, the Library Program developed and initiated several interventions to help improve Information Literacy student outcomes.

In cooperation with Faculty Chairs, all online course syllabi were modified to include links and information for library resources and services. Additionally, the Library Instructional Coordinator assisted with the design or modification of content and assignments in 31 online courses across disciplines to require more rigorous research, and the use of qualitative, validated library materials in lieu of “Googling.”

After the interventions were in place, Rio Salado students scored higher in all Information Literacy categories. 

The overall score of the pre-intervention cohort was 67.87%, while the post-intervention cohort scored 71.1%. This score exceeded the college-level benchmark, and demonstrated that the interventions were a success!

The library team continues to explore ways to further develop students’ information literacy skills and to prepare them for success in college and beyond. 

News courtesy of the Rio Salado Library.  

Image by rdubois under a CC-BY-NC-SA license.