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Becky Croxton, CPCC Library Services/UNCG MLIS Program John Wicker, CPCC GED/Basic Skills Instructor.

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Presentation on theme: "Becky Croxton, CPCC Library Services/UNCG MLIS Program John Wicker, CPCC GED/Basic Skills Instructor."— Presentation transcript:

1 Becky Croxton, CPCC Library Services/UNCG MLIS Program John Wicker, CPCC GED/Basic Skills Instructor

2 Purpose of Study To develop a deeper understanding of GED students as an information user group. Inform information service providers on how to better meet the needs of GED students.

3 The Facts In the United States, 30 million adults: Did not complete a high school education and Were not enrolled in an education program (2000 Census) 776,728 adults worldwide took some portion of the GED in ,490 (63.5%) adults met GED passing standards in 2008 Sources: 2000 US Census Data General Educational Development Testing Service, 2009, p. 1

4 Analytical Framework Robert Taylors (1991) Model of Information Use Environments: Set of people Settings (where information seeking & exchange takes place) Problems Resolution to problems Expanded this model to include: Barriers to information

5 Study Methodology Test One-on-one interviews with 15 students* enrolled in the CPCC Harris Campus GED Program. * Represents approximately % of GED student population at Harris Campus at any given time.

6 Findings Who are GED students at CPCC? Age: Range: 17 – 62 years Median age: 27 years Average age: 33 years Number of years since leaving high school: Range: 6 months to 45 years Median years: 10 years Average years: 16 years Race/Ethnicity White: 7% African American: 67% Hispanic: 2 % Asian: 2 % Gender: Female: 60% Male: 40%

7 Findings Settings When you have questions about the GED program, where do you go (or who do you ask to find the answers)? * Respondents were able to cite more than one source for information. Source of InfoPercentage of Respondents GED Instructor67% Campus Information 40% Family/Friends27% Computer/Internet13% CPCC Library7%

8 Findings Settings (continued) When you need help or information to prepare for the GED tests, where do you go (or who do you ask) to find the answers? *Respondents were able to cite more than one source for information. Source of InfoPercentage of Respondents GED Instructor73% Computer/Internet33% Books33% Campus Tutors13% Self Teach13% Friends/Family7%

9 Findings Problems (which lead to information needs) Why did you decide to enroll in a GED program? *Respondents were able to cite more than one reason for enrolling. Reason for EnrollingPercentage of Respondents Educational (interested in attending college or technical program) 73% Employment (better job opportunities) 60% Personal reasons13% Preferred GED over High School 20%

10 Findings Barriers to information What are some challenges you have faced in completing your GED? *Respondents were able to cite more than one challenge. ChallengePercentage of Respondents Academic Skills Barriers Subject specific60% Lack of Computer Expertise13% Situational Barriers Work schedule33% Child Care33% Financial33% Transportation20%

11 Findings Problem solution – enroll in GED program, remain in program, and pass all 5 exams. Retention continues to be an issue: 27% of those interviewed have enrolled in GED programs multiple times throughout adult lives

12 Findings Problem solutions (continued) CPCC libraries, though poised to be part of the problem solution, largely go unused by GED students. Have you ever considered the CPCC library as a place to go for information which might help you? ResponsePercentage of Respondents Yes20% No – Never thought of it60% Considered, but never used20%

13 Lessons Learned Using the Build it and they will come approach doesnt always work when developing services or products. Tailor services and programs according to the stated needs and preferred information seeking methods of your students or patrons.

14 Lessons Learned Demographics: Over half of GED students interviewed were ages 25 and above. Research suggests -- Adult learners may need a little bit of extra hand holding as they learn the ropes of going to school again, including utilizing the library and online resources.

15 Settings: Students seek majority of information from GED instructors. Research suggests that students respond well to GED instructors who act in facilitator/coaching role. Library/information service staff must position themselves as facilitators/coaches as well. Students may then begin to develop trust relationship, thereby facilitating the exchange of information. Lessons Learned

16 Students find value in studying with books and computers. While libraries have these resources available, libraries go unused by the majority of GED students. Libraries need to consider actively marketing their resources to GED students. GED programs must consider suggesting the library to their students. Libraries & GED must partner for their students success! Lessons Learned

17 Whats next? Help connect GED students to opportunities beyond the GED. Libraries can advertise their recommended web sites to these students, highlighting jobs and career info, educational info, and financial aid.

18 Addressing barriers confronted by GED students Situational Barriers: Continue to offer flexible hours and no-cost services. Academic Skills Barriers Increase collection of basic subject specific materials (particularly math) and advertise these collections to GED students Develop ways to help students overcome lack of computer expertise. Lessons Learned

19 Proposed Products Informational Flier: Information tailored specifically for GED students to be distributed to GED students at program registration. Accessing Your Library Step-by-Step Basic instructional guide including information on: Creating a CPCC username and password What to do if you forgot your password Navigating the online library catalog Accessing Learning Express Library Accessing Librarian Tested Web Sites

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