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Library Assessment

University Library Contributions to Student Learning Outcomes

The University Library furthers student achievement of the Institutional Learning Outcome on Information Literacy.  One way librarians support student learning is the Library Research Toolkit, a Canvas module available for faculty to embed in courses and for students to explore on their own.  In this module, students can earn a badge for demonstrating basic proficiency in information literacy.  Data on learning demonstrated in the Library Research Toolkit will be available via the CSUN Learning Outcomes Assessment Dashboard (LOADs).    

University Library Contributions to Student Success

In support of Graduation Initiative 2025, the University Library has developed a new and ongoing set of assessments of our contributions to undergraduate student retention, timely progress to graduation, and inclusive excellence. 

Impact of Zero Cost Textbooks on Course Pass Rates, 2021

The CSU Council of Library Deans (COLD) Student Success team analyzed the impact of zero-cost textbooks on the percentage of students in a course section who passed the course, and found a small but highly significant positive impact.  This was a comprehensive study of all undergraduate course sections offered across four different campuses of the California State University system. 

This work built on a previous study of the CSUN College of Health and Human Development by three CSUN librarians.

Faculty who are interested in acting on this finding can learn more about Affordable Learning $olutions for their courses.

Impact of Library Use on First Year Retention and Student Success, May 2019

This study of all 5,214 first time freshmen who entered CSUN in Fall 2017 found that the more books and media a student checks out from the library during their first year, the more likely they are to return for their second year, even after controlling for college of enrollment, high school GPA, and other confounding factors. Not only retention is improved by library use, but also progress to graduation: first-year students who check out materials of all kinds from the library earn more course credits. These findings are highly statistically significant and robust to a wide variety of specifications.

To protect the privacy of student data, complete copies of this report are available only by request; please email the Assessment Librarian, Laura Wimberley, for more details.

Student Survey, 2018

Survey responses from a representative sample of 1,465 CSUN students were combined with those students' library use, demographic, and student success data to learn more about how students use and perceive the library and how that affects their academic acheivement.  Results indicate that the University Library serves students inclusively - our Pell-eligible students are more likely to visit the library than higher-income students, and traditionally underserved students of color are more likely to use digital library resources than students from traditionally better served ethnic groups, even when controlling for their major college. Receiving library instruction is a highly significant positive predictor of timely progress to graduation.

To protect the privacy of student data, complete copies of this report are available only by request; please email the Assessment Librarian, Laura Wimberley, for more details.

University Library Student Survey

The library has continued to assess student responses to our collections, services, and events on an biennial basis.  The November 2022 student survey included 1,593 participants responding to questions on reference services, events, leisure reading, and more. A complete report on the 2022 survey, including a comparison to the 2018 findings, will be available mid-February 2023.

Charge of the Library Assessment and Student Success Committee

The Library Assessment and Student Success Committee will serve to: a) investigate and recommend methods for assessing library outcomes including, but not limited to: information competence, library collections, library services, and impact on student success; b) promote participation in library assessment projects and campus and systemwide student success initiatives; c) assist in the review and interpretation of assessment data; and d) recommend changes to implement findings of assessment projects to further student success. 

The Committee will consult with other library committees, departments, and personnel, as well as relevant campus entities as appropriate.

Team Members: