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Student Learning Outcomes

Introduction  HOME | SLOs 1,2,3 |  SLO 4 | SLO 5 | SLO matrix |  ppt

Findings and recommendations for Library Orientation SLO's
Fall 2009 - Spring 2010


Introduction

     The Cuyamaca College Library mission is to create a learning environment so that students can acquire IC skills in order to complete their research assignments. Our perspective is that library orientations are valuable instructional activities - not simply services. Librarians do not just give students the answers and send the satisfied student away; librarians instruct students on how to find, choose and accurately evaluate information.


     The librarians conduct a library orientation more commonly known as the "50-minute one-shot BI". Librarians have autonomy to present content in accordance with his/her personal style. All library orientations are custom designed to meet the instructor's requirements for research assignments. Librarians have the autonomy to present content but they must address all three SLO's in their sessions.   In 2009-2010, the Library began to assess SLO 1,2,3. We elected to forgo the traditional pre-test because time was of the essence in a short 50-minute BI Library orientation session.

Conclusion and recommendations

     The expected outcomes were not met during this 2009-2010 pilot study. One of the major difficulty in writing good test questions is getting the wording right. The limitations if this post test became too obvious during the course of implementation. For example, we still failed to remove all ambiguity such as having too many choices, too many "check all the apply" multiple choice answers, and confusing distractors. The results indicate a need for rewriting the quiz questions, clarify test directions, and select different questions in order to avoid ambiguity. Therefore, we will be refining our assessment tool and introducing it to students in Fall 2010 - Spring 2011.

SLO #1: The student will demonstrate the information competency skill of being able to construct a successful search statement (keyword and/or subject search) in order to find sources for their research thesis.

1.  You are searching for journal/magazine articles about "the impact of women in sports" in an database called Academic Onefile. You decide to do a broad keyword search for articles. which keywords would bring up the most relevant articles on your topic? (mark all that apply)
  a. women sports
  b. women achievements
  c. women media
  d. women Internet
  Research results: 88.7% students chose the correct answer.  Some students marked more than one answer because we included the phrase "mark all the apply".
Revisions to be made on post-test: Continue to offer only four choices, select better distractors, omit the "mark all that apply". Select a different topic to do a keyword and subject word search and include other databases besides Academic Onefile.
Recommended improvement for Librarian instruction: We assume the post-test revisions will clear up confusion but librarians should continue to demonstrate keyword and subject searching.

SLO #1: The student will acquire the information competency skill of being able to construct a successful search statement by using keyword and/or subject search terms in order to find sources for their research thesis.

2. You are still searching for journal/magazine articles in Academic Onefile on the broad topic of "women in media" As part of the research process, you must brainstorm for alternative keywords and subject words. which of the following are alternative keywords and subject words for "media"? (mark all the apply)
  a. workplace
  b. radio
  c. schools
  d. video games
  e. television
  f. movies
   
  Research results: 88% of the students chose the correct answers (television, radio, movies).  Some students were confused by the phrase "mark all that apply" and chose only one answer. Some students did not consider radio b/c they are use their i-pods and Google for news and research. 
Revisions to be made on this post-test: Remove six choices and offer four choices, select better distractors. omit the "mark all that apply".
Recommended improvement for Librarian instruction: We assume the post-test revisions will clear up confusion but librarians should continue to emphasize all three SLOs


SLO # 2:Student will demonstrate the information competency skill of being able to use sources in the online catalog and sources in a subscription database that are appropriate to their research needs.

 
3. Which of the following are online-subscription databases where you could find magazine and journal articles? (mark all that apply)
  a. CQ Researcher
  b. Academic Onefile
  c. Proquest
  d. Library Online Catalog
  e. Reserve collection
  f. Tutorials
   
  Research results: Students chose the right answers for Academic Onefile (76%) and CQ Researcher (58%) and CQ Researcher (36.3%)  Students chose the wrong answer by marking Library Online Catalog (42.7%).
Revisions to be made on this post-test: Remove six choices and offer only four multiple choices because six choices may be too confusing for the students. Combine answers (e.g Academic Onefile, CQ Researcher), elect better distractors, omit the "mark all that apply".
Recommended improvement for Librarian instruction: The student's choice of Library Catalog(42.7%) is a major concern.  The percentages of right answers are between 76% and 36.3% which is very low. Librarians need to emphasize the differences between a database and a catalog.  Too many choices with confused the students.

  

SLO 2:Student will demonstrate the information competency skill of being able to use sources in the online catalog and sources in a subscription database that are appropriate to their research needs

4. The Cuyamaca Library Catalog will help you locate: (mark all that apply)
  a. Reserve books
  b. Print books
  c. Electronic books
  d. Proquest
  e. Academic Onefile
  f.  CQ Researcher
   
  Research results: Students chose the right answers for e-books (82.9%), reserve books (70.7%), print books (65.7%).  However, students chose the wrong answers and selected Academic Onefile (45.4%), CQ Researcher (34.6%) and Proquest (29.6%). by the "mark all that apply" because some chose to mark only one answer.
Revisions to be made on this post-test: Remove six choices and offer only four multiple choices because six choices may be too confusing for the students, select better distractors, omit the "mark all that apply".
Recommended improvement for Librarian instruction: The student's correct answers are between 82.9% and 65.7%. The students selection of wrong answers are between 45% and 29.6% and this is an alarmingly high percentages of wrong answers. Librarians need to emphasize the differences between a database and a catalog. 

SLO 3: The student will be able to evaluate information sources and determine each source’s reliability, validity, authority and point of view. .

You are writing a report on automobile safety and tires. You have found several sources. Which source would be the most trustworthy for having objectiveinformation?
5.
  a. report from an automobile manufacturer
  b. survey from a consumer research magazine
  c.  article in a  fashion magazine
  d. article in a a tire manufacturer
   
  Research results: Only 50% of the students selected the right answer and the other 50% selected the wrong answer.
Revisions to be made on this post-test: The author and research analyst felt this was a good question even though the correct answers were only 50%. We also determined that the choice A was an excellent distractor compared to Choice C and D.  
Recommended improvement for Librarian instruction:
Librarians need to emphasize critical thinking in their orientations to improve the percentage of right answers.

 

SLO 3: The student will be able to evaluate information sources and determine each sources reliability, validity, authority and point of view.
 
6. You  are doing a research paper on "schizophrenia and teenagers".  Which of the following is the most trustworthy and objective source?
  a. An article on schizophrenia located in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology
  b. An autobiography written by a schizophrenia patient.
  c.  A general encyclopedia
  d. A website by the American Psychology Association linking near death experiences to schizophrenia
   
  Research results: 65% of the students selected the right answer.
Revisions to be made on this post-test: The author and research analyst felt this was a good question even though the correct answer being 65%. We also determined that the distractors were good ones and should be used again remain.  
Recommended improvement for Librarian instruction:
Librarians need to emphasize critical thinking in their orientations.  We are concerned that we are not emphasizing critical thinking during our orientations. Perhaps we need to be more proactive in our sessions.

 

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