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Library Assessment: Ithaka Surveys

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Faculty Survey and Graduate Student Survey?

The surveys were developed by Ithaka S+R, a non-profit research and consulting service that helps the academic community take advantage of digital technologies, preserve the scholarly record, and advance research and teaching in a sustainable way. The Faculty Survey examines the impact of library collections and services on research, teaching, and publishing.

The Graduate Student Survey examines expectations about the purpose and outcomes of higher education; the types of extracurricular experiences and their perceptions; ways graduate students discover and access needed scholarly materials for their research; and the changing role and value of the Library.

How long will the surveys run?

The surveys will run from April 9, 2018 through May 4, 2018.

Who should complete the surveys?

The Faculty Survey should be completed by all faculty including tenured, tenure-track, non-tenure, and instructors.

The Graduate Student Survey should be completed by all full-time and part-time graduate students.

How long do the surveys take to complete?

The surveys takes approximately 20 minutes to complete.

If the web browser is closed before completing the survey, progress may be saved provided they resume the survey using the same computer. However this function will not work on public work stations and web browsers that do not cache web browsing history and cookies.

What kinds of question are on the survey?

The Faculty Survey consists of a core component and questions from three selected modules: Discovery & Access, Data preservation and management, and Graduate instruction.

The Graduate Student Survey has a core component and questions from two selected modules: Research Practices and Teaching.

How will my identity be protected?

The survey will be programmed so that responses are anonymized.

When you click on the link to view the survey, your identifying information (name, email address, and IP address) will be disconnected from your responses. There will be no way to match identifying information with responses. Though college and departmental affiliation is present in the response dataset as an embedded field, there will not be any way to link responses back to individuals at that point. Deductive disclosure of an individual respondent’s identity—due to the small size of his or her department and additional demographic data collected—may be possible but is unlikely.  All achievable measures have been taken to protect the confidentiality of your answers.

How will the survey data be used?

The survey results will help the Library make data-informed decisions regarding the collections, programs and services we provide to faculty and graduate students. The results will benchmark the perceptions and experiences of faculty with national data as well as data from other institutions that have participated in the Ithaka S+R Local Surveys.

Here's what other libraries have learned from surveying their local populations:

  • The University of Nevada Las Vegas found that while faculty value open access or freely available instructional resources and assign them to students, 51% of faculty respondents indicated that they had difficulty locating appropriate open access materials.
     
  • Washington University found that “researchers have embraced electronic journals and reference works, but are actually moving away from electronic and back toward print as far as general books go.
     
  • After the survey revealed that the library was “important” or “extremely important” for developing undergraduate critical thinking and information literacy skills, DePaul University established “undergraduate learning goals for information literacy, learning goals related to the use of primary source materials, and annual assessments of student learning as part of university-wide assessment programs."

How will the results be reported to the UD community?

Ithaka S+R will deliver raw data survey findings and a report of results from the survey within a month of the close of the survey. In addition to the raw data, the report will provide visual and tabular reports on each question on the survey in a standardized format. The Assessment Committee will review the results and Ithaka S&R staff will visit campus to communicate the survey results to the UD community.

What if I have more questions?

If you have any additional questions, please contact: