Rubrics and Stuff: I’m stuck

Ok, bear with me here while I talk about my research.

I decided a few weeks ago that I want to look at Information Literacy Assessment for my doctoral research. I decided to take a previous study (which used the old ACRL Standards as criteria for assessment) and update it using the new ACRL Framework for Information Literacy.

To do that, I have to create “desired learning outcomes” for each of the threshold concepts.

So, what are the threshold concepts?

1. Scholarship is a conversation

2. Research as inquiry

3. Authority is constructed and contextual

4. Format as process

5. Searching as exploration

6. Information has value*

Each of these threshold concepts can be “mastered” (may or may not be the right word) in stages. The vocabulary of the Framework even says “Learners who are developing their information literate abilities” rather than “the information literate student”, implying that there is not a point where the student “arrives”, but that it is an ongoing process.

So, how would we use a rubric to assess this? I found this description that really simplified it for me:

RubricSo, I need to decide what the criteria are to see if students are progressing on the threshold concept. Here’s what I have for the first concept, Scholarship is a Conversation:

Desired learning outcome: Students will be able to contribute, and understand the significance of their contribution, to the scholarly conversation on a particular topic at the appropriate level, and understand the contributions of others.

Now, how does that become a rubric??? Because I’m stuck there…

The first step on all of this is to come up with desired learning outcomes. This is important to do as an instructor. I mean, my title is officially “Information Literacy Librarian”, so hopefully I’m working towards that for all students. But the desired learning outcomes have to be measurable in order to be assessible (is that a word? Able to be assessed?). We have to use desired learning outcomes, and since the standards have been updated, I really want to use the Framework.

This is me stuck. I think I need to take a break.

*The final threshold concept was just released this week, and of course I went complete insane with excitement like the nerd I am.


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