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Assessing Student Information Literacy Learning: Home

Assessing Student Learning

Librarians can help you assess student learning of information literacy skills using a variety of methods and tools. Assessment is important so that we can make changes to instructional approaches if students are struggling with particular skills and to document that our students are meeting our learning goals.

Contact Kacy Lundstrom, Coordinator of Library Instruction, or your Subject Librarian to discuss assessment options.

Performance-Based Assessment

We prefer performance-based assessments because they measure students' information literacy skills on an authentic assignment or research task.

I. Rubric-based assessment of student work

Librarians have conducted several assessments of student papers using a standard rubric of information literacy skills. These assessments have enabled us to identify areas in which students struggle and modify our instruction approach as a result.

II. Citation Analysis

Librarians have also conducted citation analyses that categorize the types of sources students cite in order to determine patterns in the use of scholarly and library sources.


Student Self-Assessment

Student self-assessment data can also help identify what students have learned, especially what has made a particularly memorable impact.

Exit Tickets
These can be done in simple online surveys or scrap pieces of paper. These tickets typically ask for two things (thought they are adaptable):

  • What did you learn?
  • What do you still want to know?

Reflection Papers
You can assign students a short, reflective piece of writing as part of a research assignment.

Student course evaluations: IDEA
The current IDEA student evaluation tool includes several information literacy learning outcomes. You can select these as options for your IDEA course evaluations at the beginning of the semester. 

  • Objective 9: Learning how to find and use resources for answering questions or solving problems.
  • Objective 11: Learning to analyze and critically evaluate ideas, arguments, and points of view.
  • Objective 12: Acquiring an interest in learning more by asking questions and seeking answers.