Document Type

Informed Improvement

Publication Date



As part of an ongoing process to assess the Information Literacy program at the University of Calgary, senior biology students were surveyed to find out what resources they actually used, and how their research habits evolved over the course of their studies. The survey asked students to reflect on their research process and the various tools they used at different stages, such as Google Scholar, Biological Abstracts, Web of Science and PubMed. The survey also asked about learning, how strategies had changed and how students learned about new tools. One of the most interesting questions asked students what they wish they had known earlier – data from this will be directly relevant to adjusting first-year courses, and may be very useful in working with Biology faculty to develop further sessions in between first and fourth year. As informative as the survey was to both librarians and teaching faculty, it was also clear that the survey benefited the students. The student responses showed that the survey questions encouraged students to value their information skills, to assess their own processes, and to see where they might need further development. The presentation will include questions and responses from the survey and a demonstration of the FAST survey tool that was used to gather the data. Participants will then share ‘interesting questions’ from their own surveys and discuss how to use assessment to prompt reflection.