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LORELEI HARRIS OLA CONFERENCE 2010 UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN (PREVIOUSLY AT UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE) Academic Libraries & Student Retention.

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Presentation on theme: "LORELEI HARRIS OLA CONFERENCE 2010 UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN (PREVIOUSLY AT UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE) Academic Libraries & Student Retention."— Presentation transcript:

1 LORELEI HARRIS OLA CONFERENCE 2010 UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN (PREVIOUSLY AT UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE) Academic Libraries & Student Retention

2 Student Retention… University of Lethbridge (Alberta): 28% attrition rate of all first time undergraduate students enrolled 1997 (2004 Report, seven years after enrollment) Canada-wide: Average long term attrition rate ~40% (Canadian Millennial Scholarship Foundation 2003 Report, based on five or six year period; Canada & USA) Lorelei Harris, 2010

3 A high rate of attrition is indicative of a failure on the part of an institution to achieve its purpose. Elizabeth Mezick, 2007 (Long Island University, Brookville, NY)

4 Agenda Student Attrition & Why its a Big Deal Student Retention as a Topic for Library Research Why is this important for Libraries? Issues around Retention Research Barriers to comparison; Definition of terms Reasons why Students Leave Psychological models How Libraries Fit Aspects of library service related to student retention Current Activities & Potential for Future Research Lorelei Harris, 2010

5 Outcomes By the end of the session, you will… Have a greater understanding of the issues surrounding student retention Gain appreciation for the factors impacting student attrition Be able to identify certain library services or activities that support retention Articulate how your library fits in supporting the broader institutional mission Lorelei Harris, 2010

6 This presentation is NOT… About teaching strategies to enhance students ability to retain knowledge of skills or class content A presentation of new research Lorelei Harris, 2010

7 This presentation IS… A discussion of existing student retention literature, as it relates to libraries Meant as a starting point; a way to start thinking about re-framing activities your library may already do or be considering Focused on postsecondary education, with emphasis on 4-yr undergraduate universities Lorelei Harris, 2010

8 Student Retention is one of the biggest concerns currently in higher education. Kay Foster, 2003 (University of Teesside, UK)

9 There is growing pressure on all academic library managers to be more accountable for how they use limited resources and to achieve institutional outcomes perceived as important by college and university stakeholders…. One such outcome is student persistence. Elizabeth Mezick, 2007 (Long Island University, Brookville, NY)

10 Student Attrition Why is student attrition big deal? Not in line with our goals & priorities Possible detrimental effect to students Financial cost for all involved Okanagan University College (1996) estimated $4,230 was lost by the institution for each student who did not continue into second year Yorke (1999) estimated the average annual cost of student attrition in the UK = £100 Million (GBP) Lorelei Harris, 2010

11 The library benefits from taking a leadership role in contributing to a campus-wide approach to retention. Stanley Wilder, 1990 (Louisiana State University)

12 Student Retention as a Topic for Library Research Why should this be an important area for libraries? Helps us tie-in with institutional goals and objectives Helps to integrate the library with other departments & faculties May open increased funding opportunities Helps us better serve the needs of our users, students Lorelei Harris, 2010

13 The academic library in general, and academic librarians in particular, plays a pivotal role in the education and retention of students. Maurie Caitlin Kelly, 1995 (University of Illinois, Chicago)

14 There remains a glaring lack of research on the effect the library environment has on students educational gains or outcomes. Lemuel W. Watson, 2001 (Clemson University, West Lafayette, IN)

15 Student Retention Literature Library studies mainly focus on: Statistically significant relationships between library expenditures, or staffing levels and student retention E.g.Hiscock, 1986 Hamrick, Schuh, & Shelley, 2004 Mezick, 2007 Lorelei Harris, 2010

16 Student Retention Literature Relationships between library use (collections) and student retention Student who borrowed books = more likely to persist E.g.Kramer & Kramer, 1968 Impact of information literacy instruction Students involved in library skills programs showed lower attrition rates E.g.Knapp, 1966 Lorelei Harris, 2010

17 Student Retention Literature Some on library involvement in first year experience programs; specific programs for at risk groups NOT proven to have significant effect E.g. Hollis, 2001 Colton, et al, 2002 Aguilar & Keating, 2009 Love, 2009 Lorelei Harris, 2010

18 Student Retention Literature Relationship between Library employment & retention Higher completion rate among library student workers E.g.Wilder, 1990 Rushing & Poole, 2002 Lorelei Harris, 2010

19 Student Retention Literature Significance of Library facilities Looked at campus facilities, including Libraries; had slight impact on retention E.g. Mallinckrodt,1987 Lau, 2003 Lorelei Harris, 2010

20 Retention Research: Lack of Consistency Frequently confused terms Different time periods covered Different student types included/excluded Retention Attrition Persistence Completion Graduation Rates Lorelei Harris, 2010

21 Program Completion Lorelei Harris, 2010

22 Student Retention / Freshman Persistence Lorelei Harris, 2010

23 Student Retention Concepts Institutional Retention Enrolling & graduating from the same institution Program Retention Enrolling & graduating with the same major or in the same school/department as initially selected System Retention Students who leave one institution yet continue and complete post-secondary studies elsewhere Lorelei Harris, 2010

24 Related Measures of Retention Persistence From first to second year? Entry to graduation? Completion From entry to graduation? (Student goals?) Graduation Rates What about transfers? Time period? Attrition Leaving institution? Leaving the system? Lorelei Harris, 2010

25 Further Retention Concepts Stopout Leave postsecondary education with the intention (and action) of returning later to complete a program Dropout Leave postsecondary education with the intention (and action) of NOT returning Transfer Change institutions yet still persist in higher education May change type of institution Voluntary Attrition? Involuntary Attrition? Lorelei Harris, 2010

26 Non-completion of courses is by no means always negative for the students concerned. Kay Foster, 2003 (University of Teesside, UK)

27 Why Students Leave: Theoretical Models Students decision to leave University is influenced by many personal factors Financial reasons Family responsibilities Lack of academic ability Poor fit, etc. Foundational Theories from Education / Psychology: Tintos Model of Student Integration (1975) Beans Model of Student Attrition (2000) Bean & Eaton Model of Student Retention (2003) Lorelei Harris, 2010

28 Tintos Model of Student Integration Vincent Tinto (University of Syracuse, NY) Initial model in 1975; revised in 1987 & 1994 Focuses on importance of social and academic integration Looks at pre-entry conditions, how experiences at school affect initial goals & values Lorelei Harris, 2010

29 Tintos Model of Student Integration (1975) Grayson & Grayson, 2003 (http://www.millenniumscholarships.ca/images/Publications/retention_final.pdf)Lorelei Harris, 2010

30 Tintos Model of Student Integration Pre-entry Characteristics: Family background (socioeconomic status) Degree of High school preparation Individual Skills & Abilities Initial Goals and Commitments Career goals Education goals Commitment to the institution Experiences in the Academic System Grade performance Interactions with faculty & peers Important: Social Integration & Academic integration Experiences lead to modified goals (student leaves) or consistent with beliefs (student stays) Lorelei Harris, 2010

31 Tintos Model: Impact Students decisions to leave are based on two sets of conditions: 1) Internal to the student; pre-university conditions 2) External to the student; internal-to-the-institution conditions Criticisms of Tintos model: - most valid with white, middle class, residential campuses Bulk of Retention literature: - test, prove, refute, modify Tintos model Lorelei Harris, 2010

32 Testing Tintos Model Ernest T. Pascarella (University of Illinois) Pascarella & Terenzini (1979) Support Tintos model for students living in residence halls Pascarella et al (1981) Applied to commuter students – found Tintos model was insufficient to predict attrition in this group (different variables affected them more strongly) Pascarella, Duby, et al (1983) In a non-residential campus, Tintos model only partly worked (social integration was less significant) Grayson & Grayson (2003) provide a review of other tests of Tintos model. Failure to accurately predict attrition in a variety of campus settings prompted further development Lorelei Harris, 2010

33 If strong linkages between libraries and student retention can be made, then the perceived value of the library may indeed rise. Steven Bell, 2008 (Temple University, Philadelphia)

34 Why Students Leave: Theoretical Models J. Bean & B. Metzner: Model of Student Attrition (1985) Focuses on 3 areas influencing student success: Academic Social-Psychological Environmental (Pull factors) More effective than Tinto re: non-traditional students Also discusses sense of self-efficacy and locus of control Taking personal ownership = greater success Lorelei Harris, 2010

35 Bean & Metzner: Model of Student Attrition (1985) Grayson & Grayson, 2003 (http://www.millenniumscholarships.ca/images/Publications/retention_final.pdf) Lorelei Harris, 2010

36 Why Students Leave: Theoretical Models J. Bean & S. Bogdan Eaton: Model of Student Retention (2001) Revised model to include: Focus on Intent More options for direct influence Focus multiple factors at a time Added intermediate influences Lorelei Harris, 2010

37 Bean & Eaton: Model of Student Retention (2001) Bean, John and Shevawn Bogdan Eaton. The Psychology Underlying Successful Retention Practices. Journal of College Student Retention 3, no. 1 (2001): Lorelei Harris, 2010

38 How Does the Library Fit? In Tintos model… (Social & Academic Integration) ACADEMIC: Pre-college prep More involvement in zero-level courses? More partnership with high school programs? SOCIAL: Peer group interaction Availability of group spaces? Peer-to-peer research assistance? Learning Commons environments? Also: use of student workers? Minority outreach? Active learning in sessions we teach SOCIAL: Faculty interaction One-on-one consultations (have a direct contact person) Office hour availability? Lorelei Harris, 2010

39 Tintos Model of Student Integration (1975) Grayson & Grayson, 2003 (http://www.millenniumscholarships.ca/images/Publications/retention_final.pdf) Lorelei Harris, 2010

40 How Does the Library Fit? Beans model: Pre-matriculation conditions – summer workshops, etc Bean & Eatons model: Self-efficacy Teaching behaviors in Reference transactions help increase student confidence in their own abilities to succeed Approach/Avoidance Early library instruction helps overcome the avoidance response and empowers students Service point staff attitudes Looking for a consistent message from the institution in order to feel they fit in with the institution Lorelei Harris, 2010

41 To be successful, students need to believe that they are effective academically and believe that they are in charge of their own outcomes. John Bean and Shevawn Bogdan Eaton, 2001 (Indiana University / North Illinois University)

42 How Does the Library Fit? (Academic & Social Integration) Help students gain confidence in research abilities necessary for success Group Study spaces meet integration needs Assist student academic performance through better research & critical thinking skills Staff attitudes and personal attention to students Potential first point of contact = shape institutional fit Lorelei Harris, 2010

43 Anyone and everyone on campus can affect these attitudes, and for this reason everyone on campus is responsible for retention. John Bean, 2005 (Indiana University, Bloomington)

44 One has to look closely to find outcomes that, though not directly stated, suggest the involvement of academic libraries. Bonnie Gratch Lindauer, 1998 (City College, San Fransico)

45 Current Initiatives, Future Directions…? Foster integration into academic community: Support student orientation efforts Engage in first year instruction Target at risk programs (minority groups, non-traditional students, etc) Provide Individualized instruction/assistance at service points Offer some student employment positions Lorelei Harris, 2010

46 Current Initiatives, Future Directions…? Offer Increased contact time with students i.e. through holding departmental office hours Provide contacts for distance learners Serve as first point of contact for institution Lorelei Harris, 2010

47 While librarians have fewer opportunities to connect with students than classroom faculty do, institutions could certainly be doing more to…heighten student feelings of connectedness. Steven Bell, 2008 (Temple University, Philadelphia)

48 Current Initiatives, Future Directions…? Possibilities for future research Try looking at graduation rates of students who completed a Library Science course vs. classmates in same disciplines? Further research like Kramer & Kramer [looked at book borrowing; found library users = more likely to persist] perhaps book circulation is not as relevant anymore – can we track login stats (length of time? Number of click-throughs?) per student & compare these stats with graduation rates? Lorelei Harris, 2010

49 Current Initiatives, Future Directions…? Comparison of completion rate at like institutions with info commons library setting (lots of group interaction, etc) v.s. traditional? Look for data already available/easy to collect: Sample of online reference users & graduation rates (already tracked…) Look at retention in a department that has librarian office hours v.s. similar department that does not? Lorelei Harris, 2010

50 Retention is quite measurable…but proving that a student stayed in school due to one program is practically impossible. John Bean, 2005 (Indiana University, Bloomington)

51 Five Point Plan for Success (Bell 2008) Emphasize delivery of individualized research assistance and personal attention Focus on research skill building as a core contributor to student academic success (marketing Info Lit) Provide data that links student persistence and satisfaction to the librarys services, resources, and people (moving beyond traditional counting) Fight for the librarys role in campuswide programming Consider ways to engage parents Lorelei Harris, 2010

52 Recap… Many things your library already does contributes to: A sense of fit with the institution Academic success Social integration Building relationships Meeting individual needs These are all directly related to models of student retention Make a case for how your library fits in the mission and goals of your institution You can back it up with theory Explore options for further research on-the-ground Lorelei Harris, 2010

53 One way to demonstrate the librarys contribution is to assess whether students experiences with the library directly or indirectly contribute to desired outcomes of college. George D. Kuh & Robert M. Gonyea, 2003 (Indiana University, Bloomington)

54 Questions?? Are you currently engaged in (intentional) student retention efforts in your library? What assessment methods have you used? Can you think of other library programs or services not mentioned that may be related to student retention? Lorelei Harris, 2010

55 References Aguilar, Paulita and Kathleen Keating. Satellite Outreach Services Program to Under-Represented Students: Being in Their Space, Not on MySpace. The Reference Librarian 50 (2009): Astin, Alexander W. And Leticia Oseguera. Pre-College and Institutional Influences in Degree Attainment. In College Student Retention: Formula for Student Success, edited by Alan Seidman, Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, Bain-Greenwood, Fiona. Tackling the Drop-Out Rates: Strategies to Improve Persistence in Three Ontario Community Colleges. Webinar (Jan 20, 2010) from the Consortium for Student Retention Data Exchange (University of Oklahoma) (http://csrde.ou.edu)http://csrde.ou.edu Bean, John and Shevawn Bogdan Eaton. The Psychology Underlying Successful Retention Practices. Journal of College Student Retention 3, no. 1 (2001): Lorelei Harris, 2010

56 References Bean, John P. Nine Themes of College Student Retention. In College Student Retention: Formula for Student Success, edited by Alan Seidman, Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, Bell, Steven. Keeping them Enrolled: How Academic Libraries Contribute to Student Retention. Library Issues (Sep 2008). Berger, Joseph B. And Susan C. Lyon. Past to Present: A Historical Look at Retention. In College Student Retention: Formula for Student Success, edited by Alan Seidman, Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, Braxton, John M. And Amy S. Hirschy. Theoretical Developments in the Study of College Student Departure. In College Student Retention: Formula for Student Success, edited by Alan Seidman, Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, Lorelei Harris, 2010

57 References Brunsden, Vivienne and Mark Davies. Why do HE Students Drop Out? A Test of Tintos Model. Journal of Further and Higher Education 24, no. 3 (2000): Carpenter, Susan and Lesley Andres. Todays Higher Education Students: Issues of Admission, Retention, Transfer, and Attrition in Relation to Changing Student Demographics. Victoria: The British Columbia Council on Admissions and Transfer, (online: Colton, George M., Ulysses J. Connor Jr., Eileen L. Shultz, and Linda M. Easter. Fighting Attrition: One Freshman Year Program that Targets Academic Progress and Retention for At-Risk Students. Journal of College Student Retention 1, no. 2 (1999/2000): Dennis, Melissa. Playing for Keeps: University Faculty and Staff Teaming Up for an Effective Student Retention Program. Mississippi Libraries 71, no. 4 (2007): Lorelei Harris, 2010

58 References Foster, Kay. Libraries and Student Retention: Some Thoughts about the Issues and an Approach to Evaluation. SCONUL Newsletter 28 (2003): Foster, Kay. Libraries and Student Retention: Report of the Services and Learning Evaluation Project. Teesside University, undated. Grayson, J. Paul and Kyle Grayson. Research on Retention and Attrition. Montreal: The Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation, (online: pdf) pdf Gansemer-Topf, Ann M. And John H. Schuh. Instruction and Academic Support Expenditures: An Investment in Retention and Graduation Journal of College Student Retention 5, no. 2 (2003/04): Lorelei Harris, 2010

59 References Gohn, Lyle, James Swartz, and Sharon Donnelly. A Case Study of Second Year Student Persistence. Journal of College Student Retention 2, no. 4 (2000/01): Hagedorn, Linda Serra. How to Define Retention: A New Look at an Old Problem. In College Student Retention: Formula for Student Success, edited by Alan Seidman, Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, Hamrick, Florence, John Schuh and Mack Shelley. Predicting Higher Education Graduation Rates from Institutional Characteristics and Resource Allocation. Education Policy Analysis Archives 12, no. 19 (2004). Hollis, Leah P. Service Ace? Which Academic Services and Resources Truly Benefit Student Athletes? Journal of College Student Retention 3, no. 3 (2001/02): Lorelei Harris, 2010

60 References Kelly, Maurie Catlin. Student Retention and Academic Libraries. College & Research Libraries News (Dec 1995): Kramer, Lloyd A. and Martha B. Kramer. The College Library and the Drop-Out. College & Research Libraries 29, no. 7 (1968): Kuh, George D. and Robert M. Gonyea. The Role of the Academic Library in Promoting Student Engagement in Learning. College and Research Libraries (Jul 2003): Landrum, R. Eric. The Responsibility for Retention: Perceptions of Students and University Personnel. Journal of College Student Retention 3, no.2 (2001): Lau, Linda K. Institutional Factors Affecting Student Retention. Education 124, no. 1 (2003): Lorelei Harris, 2010

61 References Lindauer, Bonnie Gratch. Defining and Measuring the Librarys Impact on Campuswide Outcomes. College and Research Libraries (Nov. 1998): Love, Emily. A Simple Step: Integrating Library Reference and Instruction into Previously Established Academic Programs for Minority Students. The Reference Librarian 50 (2009): Ma, Xin and George Frempong. Reasons for Non-Completion of Postsecondary Education and Profile of Postsecondary Dropouts. Gatineau: Human Resources and Social Development, McLaughlin, Gerald W., Paul V. Brozovsky and Josetta S. McLaughlin. Changing Perspectives on Student Retention: A Role for Institutional Research. Research in Higher Education 39, no. 1 (1998): Mezick, Elizabeth M. Return on Investment: Libraries and Student Retention. Journal of Academic Librarianship 33, no. 5 (2007): Lorelei Harris, 2010

62 References Mortenson, Thomas G. Measurements of Persistence. In College Student Retention: Formula for Student Success, edited by Alan Seidman, Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, Mueller, Richard E. Access and Persistence of Students in Canadian Post-Secondary Education: What We Know, What We Dont Know and Why It Matters. In Who Goes? Who Stays? What Matters? : Accessing and Persisting in Post-Secondary Education in Canada, edited by Ross Finnie, et al., Kingston: Queens University, Nora, Amaury, Elizabeth Barlow and Gloria Crisp. Student Persistence and Degree Attainment Beyond the First Year in College: The Need for Research. In College Student Retention: Formula for Student Success, edited by Alan Seidman, Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, Lorelei Harris, 2010

63 References Oseguera, Leticia and Byung Shik Rhee. The Inuence of Institutional Retention Climates on Student Persistence to Degree Completion: A Multilevel Approach. Research in Higher Education. (2009) 50: Pierard, Cindy and Kathryn Graves. The Greatest Problem with Which the Library Is Confronted: A Survey of Academic Library Outreach to the Freshman Course. In Making the Grade: Academic Libraries and Student Success, edited by Maurie Caitlin Kelly and Andrea Kross, Chicago: American Library Association, Pike, Gary R., George D. Kuh, and Robert M. Gonyea. The Relationship Between Institutional Mission and Students Involvement and Educational Outcomes. Research in Higher Education 22, no. 2 (2003): Lorelei Harris, 2010

64 References Primary Research Group. The Survey of Student Retention Policies in Higher Education. New York: Primary Research Group, Potts, Glenn and Brian Schultz. The Freshman Seminar and Academic Success of At-Risk Students. College Student Journal 42, no. 2 (2008): (html version; unp) Rowley, Jennifer. Retention: Rhetoric or Realistic Agendas for the Future of Higher Education. International Journal of Educational Management 17, no. 6 (2003): Rushing, Darla and Deborah Poole. The Role of the Library in Student Retention. In Making the Grade: Academic Libraries and Student Success, edited by Maurie Caitlin Kelly and Andrea Kross, Chicago: American Library Association, Seidman, Alan. Where We Go From Here. In College Student Retention: Formula for Student Success, edited by Alan Seidman, Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, Lorelei Harris, 2010

65 References Tinto, Vincent. Epilogue: Moving from Theory to Action. In College Student Retention: Formula for Student Success, edited by Alan Seidman, Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, Tinto, Vincent. Forward. In College Student Retention: Formula for Student Success, edited by Alan Seidman, ix-xiv. Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, Tinto, Vincent. Research and Practice of Student Retention: What Next? Journal of College Student Retention 8, no. 1 (2006): Tinto, Vincent. Taking Student Retention Seriously, Annual Recruitment and Retention Conference, Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Austin, TX, 19 June Retrieved 4 Jan 2010 from sly.pdf sly.pdf Lorelei Harris, 2010

66 References Titus, Marvin A. An Examination of the Influence of Institutional Context on Student Persistence at 4-year Colleges and Universities: A Multilevel Approach. Research in Higher Education 45 no 7 (2004) University of Lethbridge. Goals and Performance Measures Annual Report to Alberta Advanced Education and Technology. 07_Ver%201.0_Jan%207-08%20FINAL.pdf 07_Ver%201.0_Jan%207-08%20FINAL.pdf University of Lethbridge. Record of Success. Accountability. Watson, Lemuel W. How do Students Perceptions of their Library Usage Influence Their Educational Outcomes? College Student Journal (Sep 2001). Lorelei Harris, 2010

67 References Weiner, Sharon. The Contribution of the Library to the Reputation of a University. Journal of Academic Librarianship (Jan 2009): Whitmire, Ethelene. Academic Library Performance Measures and Undergraduates Library Use and Educational Outcomes. Library and Information Science Research 24 (2002): Wilder, Stanley. Library Jobs and Student Retention. College & Research Libraries News (Dec 1990): Zepke, Nick and Linda Leach. Integration and Adaptation: Approaches to the Student Retention and Achievement Puzzle. Active Learning in Higher Education 6, no. 1 (2005): Lorelei Harris, 2010


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