Purdue Libraries and School of Information Studies News

Information Literacy & Student Performance Research Article Makes Top 20 on ALA LIRT Annual List

June 28th, 2019

Michael Flierl, Purdue Libraries and School of Information Studies
Michael Flierl

“It can be challenging for instruction librarians to create sustained collaborations with instructors beyond the one-shot instruction session. The results from this study make a compelling case for why collaborating with disciplinary instructors on course design―such as working together to design meaningful assignments throughout the term―can provide benefits for students in gaining information literacy skills, as well as helping them engage more deeply with course content.” ― Melissa Harden, LIRT Top Twenty Articles 2019 Selection Committee

Purdue University Libraries and School of Information Studies Assistant Professor Michael Flierl, Associate Professor Clarence Maybee, and Instructional Designer Rachel Fundator, as well as Purdue Center for Instructional Excellence Instructional Developer Emily Bonem, were recently recognized by the Library Instruction Round Table (LIRT) for their research article “Information literacy supporting student motivation and performance: Course-level analyses.” Their research, published in the January 2018 issue of Library and Information Science Research, was listed as one of the “Top Twenty Articles of 2018” by LIRT in its June 2019 newsletter.

Clarence Maybee, Purdue Libraries and School of Information Studies
Clarence Maybee

“This article describes the results of a large-scale study exploring the relationships between information literacy, student academic performance, and student motivation in the context of disciplinary courses,” notes the article abstract.

Emily Bonem, Purdue Center for Instructional Excellence
Emily Bonem/Photo by Laura Fritz

The abstract continues: “Data were gathered from over 3,000 students at a public research university through an end-of-semester survey that asked questions about learning climate, basic psychological needs, student motivation, and perceptions of relevance of course content to future careers. Instructors also completed a survey indicating how often students in their courses were expected to use information in various ways, including posing questions or problems, accessing information outside of assigned readings, evaluating sources, synthesizing information and communicating results, and applying the conventions of attribution. The responses to these surveys were analyzed in conjunction with student course grades to determine the relationships between information engagement and use, and student motivation and achievement.”

Rachel Fundator, Purdue Libraries and School of Information Studies
Rachel Fundator

“The results suggest a positive relationship between students synthesizing and communicating information throughout the term and student perceptions of autonomy and motivation. Therefore, instruction librarians should encourage disciplinary instructors to design and create many opportunities for students to engage in higher-order skills, such as synthesizing and communicating information, throughout the term. These results suggest that the benefits for students gained from these types of learning opportunities include higher academic achievement and greater motivation to learn disciplinary content presented in their courses,” assert the authors.

LIRT is part of the American Library Association and was founded in 1977. According to its website, the organization empowers librarians, from all types of libraries, to become better teachers through sharing best practices, leadership and professional development, and networking.

For more information about LIRT, visit