The following is a summary of the 2017-2018 General Education Information Literacy survey. This survey asked students for feedback and for input on how to improve Information Literacy general education courses.
- 92% of 118 survey respondents are classified as freshman (63%) or sophomores (29%).
- 41% of respondents indicated that the Information Literacy course they took helped them to learn how to identify, locate, evaluate, and effectively and responsibly use and share information for a particular problem “extremely well” or “very well.” An additional 31% responded that the course helped them “adequately well.”
- The above-listed goal was “important” or “somewhat important” to 71% of respondents.
When asked, in regards to these courses, what aspects helped with learning and why they were helpful, student responses included:
- Access to the online databases through the dual credit program. Also, the freedom to choose certain topics for projects.
- Advanced writing, peer review and multiple chances to improve paper before turning in, more experience with research
- Contributing to discussion forums on blackboard makes me reflect on the topic when I create my own post. Furthermore, by commenting on others’ posts I consider other facets of the topic that I didn’t think of before.
- I think what was helpful was using the data bases to find sources and to incorporate them into our speeches. I think my ability to speak about my research has increased in quality
Students offered the following suggestions when prompted to share what “would have improved your learning in relation to your understanding of the use and sharing of information in solving problems:”
- Don’t be so eager to grade every speech based on “performance” according to a systematic guideline. Grade based on improvement. A lot of students felt less relaxed under the pressure of being analyzed and judged based on whether or not they were able to keep consistent eye contact, stop their fidgeting etc… although, these things are crucial grade on the improvement that the student makes per speak versus on their first try… where they’re getting comfortable and learning the dos and don’ts of public speaking and what works for them.
- I don’t think we should so much focus on the research. Sometimes I felt as this class was just how well you could say your research paper. There wasn’t a lot of room for being creative and we were limited on the topics that we could choose. I found it hard to inform people on a topic that I was not passionate about. I think we should still do some research but I think the main thing we should be focusing is the speaking in it self. I wouldn’t even practice the night before my speech because I knew I was just reading my research which I don’t think she be the point of the class. What would have really helped me was feedback on my actual speaking and ability to solve problems that I was passionate about. The book did not help as well, it should all be about getting up in class and learning how to overcome that fear. I can’t do that when I get up in front of the class there 3-4 times and talk about quotes I took off the data base.
- I would suggest incorporating more classroom materials that question perspectives from all angles on the spectrum, and allow for students to decipher and question for themselves what they want to believe. Instead of presenting ideas with a goal of being unbiased and “inclusive”, present information that makes students battle their own beliefs, and have classroom conversations to it’s effectiveness and credibility.
- Make the courses more tailored to the majors that people are interested in. I took 4 years of English in high school, and I had to take it here too, it doesn’t have anything to do with my major. I also don’t understand why we need to take Fine Arts credits either.