Research Article: “The Library’s Impact on University Students’ Academic Success and Learning”
The following article appears in new issue (published today) of Evidence Based Library and Information Practice (EBLIP) published by the University of Alberta Learning Services.
Jung Mi Scoulas
University of Illinois at Chicago
Sandra L. De Groote
University of Illinois at Chicago
Vol 14 No 3 (2019)
The purpose of this study was to examine relationships among student library visits, library resource use, library space satisfaction (e.g., quiet study space), and students’ academic performance (i.e., Grade Point Average or GPA) using quantitative data and to better understand how the academic library has an impact on students’ learning from students’ perspectives using qualitative data.
A survey was distributed during the Spring 2018 semester to graduate and undergraduate students at a large public research institution. Survey responses consisted of two types of data: (1) quantitative data pertaining to multiple choice questions related to the student library experience, and (2) qualitative data, including open-ended questions, regarding students’ perceptions of the library’s impact on their learning. Quantitative data was analyzed using Spearman’s rank correlations between students’ library experience and their GPAs, whereas qualitative data was analyzed employing thematic analysis.
The key findings from the quantitative data show that student library visits and library space satisfaction were negatively associated with their GPA, whereas most students’ use of library resources (e.g., journal articles and databases) was positively associated with their GPAs. The primary findings from the qualitative data reveal that students perceived the library as a place where they can concentrate and complete their work. Additionally, the students reported that they utilize both the quiet and collaborative study spaces interchangeably depending on their academic needs, and expressed that the library provides them with invaluable resources that enhance their coursework and research.
While the findings show that the student library experience was associated with their academic achievements, there were mixed findings in the study. The findings suggest that as a student’s GPA increases, their in-person library visits and library space satisfaction decrease. On the other hand, as a student’s GPA increases, their library resource usage increases. Further investigation is needed to better understand the negative relationship between students’ library visits, library space satisfaction, and their GPAs.
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See Also: Direct to Table of Contents Vol 14 No 3 of EBLIP
About Gary Price
Gary Price (email@example.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com. Gary is also the co-founder of infoDJ an innovation research consultancy supporting corporate product and business model teams with just-in-time fact and insight finding.