Thursday, January 20, 2022

Multidisciplinary youth services research

Abstract: Scholars working in the area of children and youth services (CYS) have called for researchers and educators to look to disciplines outside of Library and Information Science (LIS) for inspiration in moving this area of the field forward. In this paper, we explore the opportunities provided by incorporating theoretical approaches and concepts from the fields of childhood studies, learning sciences, and educational technology in three separate special topics courses offered at the University of Kentucky. In these courses, we draw on our knowledge and expertise within fields external to LIS in order to encourage our students to think deeply and critically about how they think about, interact with, and provide services for children and youth. While two of the three courses are not solely focused on children and youth, all include content relevant to CYS professionals. In each section, we highlight the ways in which our different disciplinary expertise influences both the material we teach and the ways in which we teach. We then discuss the commonalities amongst our experiences and the potential that incorporating concepts and theories from these and other disciplines has for broadening CYS curricula more generally.

Barriage, S., DeGiacomo, D., & Gtreenhaigh, S. (2022). Thinkig beyond library and information science: Interdisciplinary inspiration for children and youth services curricula. JELIS, 63(1), 1-18.

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Intellectual freedom issues in school librarianship preparation research

 This study was conducted to examine the preparation of school librarians around intellectual freedom issues. The pilot study was conducted with school librarian students at three universities. A gap analysis was used by the researchers to measure the gap between prior knowledge about intellectual freedom that students believed they possessed upon entering a school library preparation program and the knowledge they believed they possessed when leaving the school library preparation program. A survey was administered that was divided into the three aspects of self-awareness, education, and willingness to take action. The educational gaps are focused on in this article with recommendations to continue to analyze the data in further publications. Additionally, the researchers provide suggestions for improving school librarians’ preparation in the area of intellectual freedom.

Dawkins, A., & Branyon, A. (2022). Prepared to defend? Results of a gap analysis to measure  school librarian students' prior knowledge and learning of intellectual freedom concepts. School Library Research, 46.

Friday, January 14, 2022

School Library Selection Policies Research

Researchers examined policies from 80 school districts across the United States to determine the status of selection policies in school libraries and whether the policies contain components recommended by the “Selection & Reconsideration Policy Toolkit for Public, School, & Academic Libraries” published by the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom in 2018. The research team also sought to determine the overall effectiveness of policies by discussing the discrepancies between the toolkit and the sample selection policies.&The research team determined that most of the school library selection policies included at least half of the expected key components. However, they state a need for school librarians to advocate for revision of policies to keep them current and provide effective guidance for school librarians as they make selections for their collections.

Dawkins, A., & Eidson, S. (2021). A content analysis of district school library selection policies in the United States. School Library Research, 24.

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

College-Career Readiness Study

 Differences in access to supports in high school contribute to variation in access to postsecondary opportunities. The study's authors compare nationally representative survey response data from the 2020 and 2021 Learn Together Surveys to examine differences in how high school teachers and principals provided supports to students for successful postsecondary transitions before and during the first year of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Through their analysis, the authors identify equity gaps in which groups of students reportedly received sufficient supports.

Key Findings

  • Access to supports for postsecondary transitions was unevenly distributed across student groups.
  • High school teachers reported providing fewer students with college and career readiness supports one year into the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • High school principals and teachers desired more staff to help with postsecondary transitions.
Mulhern, C., & Steiner, E. (2022). Changes in college and career readiness supports during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. Rand.,%202022%205:50:41%20AM%20PST&utm_campaign=NPA:3004:7584:Jan%2012,%202022%205:50:41%20AM%20PST

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Reading for Pleasure Benefits Study

 Reading for pleasures is associated with improved outcomes for students, according to data from the National Assessment of Educational Progress and the Program for International Student Assessment. Yet, data shows a decline in the number of those who report reading for pleasure, as well as potential downsides to consuming more information digitally versus in print.Young readers using simple, short texts have not seen a significant drop in comprehension, whether they were reading in print or online, while teenagers and adults, grappling with long-form and more complex texts, did find digital reading more challenging for comprehension and focus.

Kogar, E.Y. (2021). An Investigation of the Mediating Role of Various Variables in the Effect of Both Gender and Economic, Social and Cultural Status on Reading Literacy. International Journal of Progressive Education, 17(1), 376-391. doi: 10.29329/ijpe.2021.329.24

This study is discussed at:Sparks, S. (2022, Jan. 4). How to nurutre lifelong readers in a digital age. Education Week.

See also Baron, N. (2021). How we read now: Strategic choices for print, screen, and audio. Oxford University Press. 

See also Merga, M. K., & Mat Roni, S. (2018). Children’s perceptions of the importance and value of reading. Australian Journal of Education62(2), 135-153.

 Merga, M. K., & Mat Roni, S. (2018). Children’s perceptions of the importance and value of

reading. Australian Journal of Education, 62(2), 135-153.

School Libraries Status Reports

 The EveryLibrary Institute has released two free reports that underscore the importance of school librarians. (Registration is required for each.)

The first, “Anticipating the Post-COVID Pivot for School Librarians,” looks at “recent research and data about the role, impact, and importance of school librarians and school library programs to create a detailed, actionable set of recommendations for education policy-makers concerned with sustaining successful schools and turning-around failing ones.”

The second—“Could School Librarians Be the Secret to Increasing Literacy Scores?”—is based on research from Washington, D.C., public schools showing that there’s “a connection between gains in the literacy-based component of standardized tests and [students’] access to school librarians. School librarians in Washington, D.C., Public Schools (DCPS) have worked diligently to increase literacy in every school over the past several years.”

Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Print versus digital books research

 "While a recent study concluded that paper books yielded better comprehension than e-books when many of the digital tools had been removed, the effect sizes were small. A 2021 meta-analysis further muddies the water: When digital and paper books are “mostly similar,” kids comprehend the print version more readily—but when enhancements like motion and sound “target the story content,” e-books generally have the edge. There’s plenty of evidence that writing with pen and paper encodes learning more deeply than typing. But new digital book formats come preloaded with powerful tools that allow readers to annotate, look up words, answer embedded questions, and share their thinking with other readers." (excerpted from Eutopia)

Furenes, M. I., Kucirkova, N., & Bus, A. G. (2021). A Comparison of Children’s Reading on Paper Versus Screen: A Meta-Analysis. Review of Educational Research91(4), 483–517.