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Title:Overconfident and Underprepared: Assessment of First-Year Undergraduate Students’ Information Literacy Skills
Author(s):Marksbury, Nancy; Higgins, April
Subject(s):Academic libraries
Information literacy
Information needs
Information seeking
Reading and reading practices
Abstract:College students entering their first year at a small, private liberal arts college do so with varying levels of information literacy (IL) skills. With some evidence that first-year students tend to overestimate their skills, we created an instrument to measure both the students’ confidence levels with various IL-related activities as well as their ability to demonstrate their knowledge of the skills themselves. After gathering the results from 159 participants during their first semester, we found that while 90% of students self-ranked their IL abilities as medium to high, 64% of participants failed the skills assessment portion of the test. Fifty-eight percent of this sample were overconfident, while 35% correctly self-ranked their skills, and 7% under-rated their abilities. This indicates to us that students are not arriving prepared for the expectations placed on them in college-level courses. As a result, we should frame our information literacy instruction in ways that acknowledge this gap, and help students to understand that they should learn new ways of doing research instead of relying on old habits.
Issue Date:2020-10-13
Series/Report:Academic Libraries
Information Literacy
Information Needs
Information Seeking
Reading and Reading Practices
Genre:Conference Paper / Presentation
Date Available in IDEALS:2020-10-09

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