Academic

A 1966 survey at the University of Windsor (Canada) of freshman students who had taken a compulsory 7-week library orientation course where the lectures were presented via videotape (population: “around 900”; responding: 832) showed that, when asked whether they preferred the video to an instructor without the aid of television, 438 (52.6%) reported they preferred the video, 320 (38.5%) reported they preferred the instructor without the video, and 74 (8.9%) reported they had no preference.             (Source)

A study reported in 1971 of library instruction involving “approximately 190” students in a general biology class at Earlham College showed thatthere was no statistically significant difference in students’ ability to use the library or in their development of positive attitudes toward the library regardless of whether instruction was presented by a librarian in a 2-hour lecture/demonstration or via a guided self-paced exercise undertaken by individual students.                       (Source)

A study reported in 1972 of 174 students at Brigham Young University concerning library instruction showed thatstudents provided with audiotaped, programmed instruction scored statistically significantly higher on their instruction post-test than did those students given a written, nonprogrammed instruction document (significance level at .01 or better). Both groups scored statistically significantly higher than the control group (significance level at .01 or better).              (Source)

        Ibid…. showed thatthe mean score between pretest and post-test for the audiotaped, programmed instruction method rose from 32% correct answers to 84%, while the mean score for the written, nonprogrammed instruction method rose from 32% to 72%. Both of these increases were statistically significant, while the slight increase in the mean score for the control group was not statistically significant.                (Source)

A survey reported in 1973 at Portland State University Library (Oregon) of more than 200 students randomly assigned to 7 different types of library instruction groups showed thatthe slide-tape presentation was found to be more effective than either a tape presentation alone or the conventional library lectures at the .01 level of significance and more effective than a television presentation (which included a follow-along notebook) at the .05 level of significance.             (Source)

        Ibid…. showed thatstudents who received a tape presentation followed by a 50-minute follow-up session by a librarian received statistically significantly higher scores than did students receiving only the slide-tape presentation.                      (Source)

A study in 1975-76 at the Wooster Agricultural Technical Institute of the Ohio State University of 161 freshmen showed thatthere was no statistically significant difference between using lecture method versus programmed instruction text in teaching use of periodical indexes.                     (Source)

A study of the effectiveness of 3 different approaches to the teaching of library skills at the University of Nebraska, Omaha, Spring semester 1978, showed thatPLATO and a tutorial approach were almost equally effective and resulted in statistically significantly higher test scores on a library skills test than either the noninstructed control group or the group provided with a traditional library tour. However, the average scores for PLATO and tutorial instruction were only 51% and 52% correct, respectively.                    (Source)

A survey reported in 1983 of students in freshman rhetoric classes concerning their choice library orientation formats [without necessarily having experienced the options] showed that 156 students at the University of Iowa chose the following as the “most interesting” format:

                librarian-guided tour                           95 (61%) students

                audiotape tour                                   44 (28%) students

                slide-tape or videotape tour               17 (11%) students

The same students chose the following as “most instructive” format:

                librarian-guided tour                         102 (65%) students

                audiotape tour                                   39 (25%) students

                slide-tape or videotape tour               15 (10%) students                (Source)

        Ibid…. showed that112 students at the University of Missouri chose the following as the “most interesting” format:

                audiotape tour                                   79 (71%) students

                slide-tape or videotape tour               33 (29%) students

The same students chose the following as the “most instructive” format:

                audiotape tour                                   86 (77%) students

                slide-tape or videotape tour               26 (23%) students                (Source)

A 1978 study of freshmen in English courses at Michigan Technological University and the University of Minnesota, Duluth, to compare the effects of bibliographic instruction and instruction techniques (survey size: 1,868; usable: 1,234 with 327 students in the lecture group, 302 in the programmed instruction group, and 605 in the control group) showed thatstudents provided with programmed instruction made statistically significantly higher scores on a library skills test than students provided with the traditional lecture. Specifically, students who received programmed instruction averaged a score of 36.759, while students who received the lecture approach averaged a score of 30.056 (significant at the .001 level).                  (Source)

A study reported in 1979 at the University of Toledo comparing the effectiveness of presenting bibliographic instruction information by means of a slide-tape show versus a library tour to students in a freshman-level business report-writing course (slide-tape group, 76 students; tour group, 75 students) showed thatthere was no statistically significant difference in post-test scores between the groups. The tour group scores averaged 15.35, while the slide-tape scores averaged 13.75.                  (Source)

A 1979 study at the University of Michigan comparing 2 groups of graduate students in an educational psychology class who compiled required bibliographies in 2 different ways (6 students used online searching; 8 students used conventional manual methods) showed thatthere were substantial differences of opinion about the 2 search processes:

                66% of the online group versus 100% of the manual group ranked the literature as “highly responsive to information needs”;

                12% of the online group versus 80% of the manual group reported a “high proportion of total productive time spent in literature search”;

                50% of the online group versus 100% of the manual group reported a “high level of confidence about being able to find information in future searches”;

                12% of the online group versus 40% of the manual group reported that “search techniques provide a great deal of insight into topics considered.”                 (Source)

A 1979-80 study at Erindale and Scarborough Colleges (satellite campuses of the University of Toronto, Canada) concerning the effectiveness of course-integrated instruction and a compulsory course-related library assignment in both biology and sociology classes (2 biology classes and 3 sociology classes involving 406 undergraduate students) showed that

                a compulsory library assignment may be an important element in providing library instruction:

                library skills test scores were statistically significantly higher for biology students given instruction and assignment (79.5% correct answers) than for students given neither instruction or assignment (63% correct answers), significant at the .05 level;

                library skills test scores were statistically significantly higher for sociology students given instruction and assignment (79.4% correct answers) than for students given neither instruction or assignment ( 70% correct answers), significant at the .05 level;

                library skills test scores were not statistically significantly higher for sociology students given instruction but no assignment (72% correct answers) than for sociology students given no instruction and no assignment (70% correct answers).                        (Source)

A survey reported in 1981 of bibliographic instruction in business school libraries (sample size: 120 libraries; responding: 65; usable: 61 or 50.8%) showed thatthe 3 methods rated by respondents as most effective in bibliographic instruction and orientation were lectures to specific classes (48.3% respondents), printed materials (21.7% respondents), and tours (11.7% respondents).                (Source)

        Ibid…. showed thatthe 2 methods rated by respondents as least effective in bibliographic instruction and orientation were orientation lectures (20% respondents) and tours (15% respondents).    (Source)

A study reported in 1982 at Bowling Green State University in Ohio that compared library instruction provided via a workbook (250 students) versus lecture (203 students) showed thatgenerally students preferred the workbook. For example, 74.8% of the students “agreed” or “strongly agreed” that the workbook was “clear and understandable” compared to 63.2% of the students so responding for the lecture, while 48.0% of the students “agreed” or “strongly agreed” that the workbook helped them feel more confident in using the library compared to 43.6% of the students so responding to the lecture. Later revisions of the workbook used by another group of students (460 students) raised its “clear and understandable” rating to 85.6% and its “more confident in using the library” rating to 70.0%.                 (Source)

 

Dr. David Kohl

 "Libraries in the digital age are experiencing the most profound transformation since ancient Mesopotamian scribes first began gathering and organizing cuneiform tablets."

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