Carrie Donovan is Head of Teaching and Learning at the Indiana University Libraries. She is also a member of the Advisory Board for the Threshold Achievement Test for Information Literacy. Carrie recently presented a poster session at ALA Annual in San Francisco entitled College Student Engagement in Information Literacy Activities Across the Disciplines. Her co-presenter was Dr. Kevin Fosnacht, who is a researcher at the Center for Postsecondary Research at IU. Together they examined national data from the Experiences with Information Literacy module of the well-known National Survey of Student Engagement. They discovered that students in “non-STEM majors had the highest levels of engagement with information sources.” I had an opportunity to talk with Carrie about the study:
Question: How did you get involved with this research project?
Carrie: In 2011 my boss, Diane Dallis, who is the Associate Dean of Academic Services at the IU Libraries, suggested that we meet with the NSSE researchers to discuss the possibilities for gathering data at the campus level regarding students’ use of information sources for enhanced learning. Building on the work of Bonnie Gratch-Lindauer, Amy Mark, and Polly Boruff-Jones, we were hoping to convince these colleagues that the permanent integration of library-related questions into the general NSSE survey would be a good approach. Because they were in the process of developing topic-specific modules that institutions could append to the general survey based on local context and interest, it was suggested that an information literacy module would make the most sense. So I began collaborating with Kevin on that project and we have been working together ever since.