In 2017-18, University Library Educational Services undertook a large-scale assessment project in collaboration with IUPUI Institutional Research and Decision Support. This study was funded through a grant from the Indianapolis Foundation Library Fund, an affiliate of the Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF).
The study was a mixed-methods study of first-year and upper-division students’ information literacy (IL) competencies. Using a rubric and a survey, the project sought to answer two research questions: 1) Is there a correlation between National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) IL survey responses and IL rubric scores? 2) Are there any indicators that correlate to improved IL performance in first-year students? Results demonstrated that first-year students reported greater engagement with IL and also indicated that instructors placed greater emphasis on IL competencies than students in upper-division courses. They also show a statistically significant impact on first-year students’ rubric scores when a librarian is in the class. This finding held even when controlling for other variables. Results provide an evidence-based foundation to spur conversations with faculty and university administration on the value of IL and the role of librarians in undergraduate student success.