Research Methods in Library and Information Science
Topic: Evaluating Programs and Services
Spring 2012 Greensheet
Textbooks and Readings
D2L Login and Tutorials
D2L Information:This course will be delivered entirely online through D2L. Students will be automatically enrolled in the D2L site for this course. The course will be automatically available to students on January 25th.
Research methods covering fundamental principles, processes, values and roles of research for professional application in information organizations. Students will become critical consumers of research products and learn the basic skills of planning, designing, executing and reporting research as well as evaluating and applying published research findings. Emphasis will concentrate on developing, planning, and producing a quality research proposal. This section provides a general introduction to the theory and practice of both creating and consuming research in the field of library and information science. In this section we will use the goals and processes of evaluating library programs and services as our lens for exploring and practicing LIS research.
Course Prerequisites: LIBR200, LIBR202, LIBR204, and demonstrated writing proficiency required.
285 Waiver Option:
If a student has taken and passed a graduate level-research methods course AND completed a thesis or dissertation as part of a previous graduate degree (as documented by an official transcript), the student can petition the SLIS Graduate Advisor to waive the LIBR 285 requirement. A waiver, if granted, does not reduce the total units required for the MLIS degree. See Waiver option
Student Learning Outcomes
Students will be able to:
- Understand the difference between primary and secondary research;
- Demonstrate knowledge of fundamental principles and processes of conducting research;
- Articulate the research method(s) covered in the course, appropriately apply them, and understand their strengths and liabilities;
- Understand appropriate data collection/analysis tools, and ethical concerns related to research;
- Develop, plan, and produce a research proposal that involves a plan to evaluate a library program or service.
LIBR 285 supports the following MLIS Core Competency:
- Understand the nature of research, research methods and research findings; retrieve, evaluate and synthesize scholarly and professional literature for informed decision-making by specific client groups. (Competency L)
Students' work will be evaluated according to the following specific criteria:
Identify research problem, conduct critical literature review and analysis, collect data, develop a conceptual hypothesis and theory, and produce a formalized research proposal or a research report.
IRB Training Requirement
Complete the National Institute of Health’s online workshop titled: “Protecting Human Research Participants (PHRP).” Completion of this workshop is required by all San José State University faculty and students intending to do research with living human subjects. The course can be located at: phrp.nihtraining.com/users/login.php
|Introduction to creating and using LIS research|
|Becoming a researcher|
|Planning your project|
|Conducting a Literature Review and Reading Critically|
|Critical review - summary analysis of a research report or article due February 28 [15%]|
|Assembling the research argument|
|Acknowledgments and responses|
|Literature Review on a Hot Topic due March 20 [20%]|
|Data Analysis Assignment due April 17 [10%]|
|Final Library Program Evaluation Research Proposal due May 8 [30%]|
|IRB training requirement due May 15 [5%]|
Course Grading and assignments
- IRB training requirement
Complete the National Institute of Health’s online workshop titled: “Protecting Human Research Participants (PHRP).” Completion of this workshop is required by all San José State University faculty and students intending to do research with living human subjects. All you need to place in the Dropbox is your certificate of completion number. The course is located at: phrp.nihtraining.com/users/login.php
- Critical review
Read critically a research report or article (at least 5 pp. long) and write a short paper (3-5 pp.) summarizing your understanding and assessment of the research problem, research methods, findings, and recommendations, as well as your assessment of the value of the research and the overall quality of the research report.
- Literature review
Compile a literature review (at least 20 items) containing a variety of resources, which can include journal and newsletter articles, videos, online programs, virtual world events, recent blog posts, wiki entries, and other rapidly deployed info sources on a hot topic in librarianship that contains a program or service evaluative research opportunity. Briefly describe a research question you might like to pursue based on this literature review.
- Data analysis
Analyze a sample set of data (obtained directly by you or from the instructor), noting the assumptions, definitions, strengths, and limitations of the type of data set you have chosen. Your data analysis need not be exhaustive, but it should be approximately 3-5 pages in length.
- Final proposal
Final written research proposal (10-12 pp.) describing a real or fictitious library program or service to be evaluated, the research problem(s) inherent in the program or service, the methodology and data collection strategies to be used, a critical literature review, and a plan of action.
A portion of the overall grade is allocated for class participation. For the purposes of this class, participation includes prompt and thoughtful contribution to online discussions, engagement with class activities, and a demonstration that you are making an effort to master the material covered in this course. During most weeks of the course, there will be a new discussion topic posted related to the course readings. You will be required to participate in a minimum of ten topics.
More details on the assignments will be provided in D2L.
Note: Assignments (except the weekly discussion topics) are due by midnight Pacific Time on the date listed. Deductions of 10% per day will be assessed for late submissions.
|Assignment||% of final grade|
|IRB training requirement||5%|
|Discussions||20% (2% each)|
Textbooks and Readings
- Booth, W., Colomb, G., & Williams, J. (2008). The Craft of Research (3rd ed.). University of Chicago Press. Available through Amazon: 0226065669.
The standard SJSU School of Information Grading Scale is utilized for all iSchool courses:
|97 to 100||A|
|94 to 96||A minus|
|91 to 93||B plus|
|88 to 90||B|
|85 to 87||B minus|
|82 to 84||C plus|
|79 to 81||C|
|76 to 78||C minus|
|73 to 75||D plus|
|70 to 72||D|
|67 to 69||D minus|
In order to provide consistent guidelines for assessment for graduate level work in the School, these terms are applied to letter grades:
- C represents Adequate work; a grade of "C" counts for credit for the course;
- B represents Good work; a grade of "B" clearly meets the standards for graduate level work;
For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA) — INFO 200, INFO 202, INFO 204 — the iSchool requires that students earn a B in the course. If the grade is less than B (B- or lower) after the first attempt you will be placed on administrative probation. You must repeat the class the following semester. If -on the second attempt- you do not pass the class with a grade of B or better (not B- but B) you will be disqualified.
- A represents Exceptional work; a grade of "A" will be assigned for outstanding work only.
Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).
General Expectations, Rights and Responsibilities of the Student
As members of the academic community, students accept both the rights and responsibilities incumbent upon all members of the institution. Students are encouraged to familiarize themselves with SJSU's policies and practices pertaining to the procedures to follow if and when questions or concerns about a class arises. See University Policy S90-5 at http://www.sjsu.edu/senate/docs/S90-5.pdf. More detailed information on a variety of related topics is available in the SJSU catalog at http://info.sjsu.edu/web-dbgen/catalog/departments/LIS.html. In general, it is recommended that students begin by seeking clarification or discussing concerns with their instructor. If such conversation is not possible, or if it does not serve to address the issue, it is recommended that the student contact the Department Chair as a next step.
Dropping and Adding
Students are responsible for understanding the policies and procedures about add/drop, grade forgiveness, etc. Refer to the current semester's Catalog Policies section at http://info.sjsu.edu/static/catalog/policies.html. Add/drop deadlines can be found on the current academic year calendars document on the Academic Calendars webpage at http://www.sjsu.edu/provost/services/academic_calendars/. The Late Drop Policy is available at http://www.sjsu.edu/aars/policies/latedrops/policy/. Students should be aware of the current deadlines and penalties for dropping classes.
Information about the latest changes and news is available at the Advising Hub at http://www.sjsu.edu/advising/.
Consent for Recording of Class and Public Sharing of Instructor Material
University Policy S12-7, http://www.sjsu.edu/senate/docs/S12-7.pdf, requires students to obtain instructor's permission to record the course and the following items to be included in the syllabus:
- "Common courtesy and professional behavior dictate that you notify someone when you are recording him/her. You must obtain the instructor's permission to make audio or video recordings in this class. Such permission allows the recordings to be used for your private, study purposes only. The recordings are the intellectual property of the instructor; you have not been given any rights to reproduce or distribute the material."
- It is suggested that the syllabus include the instructor's process for granting permission, whether in writing or orally and whether for the whole semester or on a class by class basis.
- In classes where active participation of students or guests may be on the recording, permission of those students or guests should be obtained as well.
- "Course material developed by the instructor is the intellectual property of the instructor and cannot be shared publicly without his/her approval. You may not publicly share or upload instructor generated material for this course such as exam questions, lecture notes, or homework solutions without instructor consent."
Your commitment, as a student, to learning is evidenced by your enrollment at San Jose State University. The University Academic Integrity Policy F15-7 at http://www.sjsu.edu/senate/docs/F15-7.pdf requires you to be honest in all your academic course work. Faculty members are required to report all infractions to the office of Student Conduct and Ethical Development. The Student Conduct and Ethical Development website is available at http://www.sjsu.edu/studentconduct/.
Campus Policy in Compliance with the American Disabilities Act
If you need course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability, or if you need to make special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please make an appointment with me as soon as possible, or see me during office hours. Presidential Directive 97-03 at http://www.sjsu.edu/president/docs/directives/PD_1997-03.pdf requires that students with disabilities requesting accommodations must register with the Accessible Education Center (AEC) at http://www.sjsu.edu/aec to establish a record of their disability.
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