Archive for the School Category

New Colorado Study to Document How School Librarians Teach Information Literacy

The Library Research Service is undertaking a third “Colorado study” of school libraries, with the working title, How School Librarians Teach Critical Thinking. This study, employing an exciting new methodology, will provide the most precise evidence to date on the value of school librarians by focusing on how they teach information literacy skills. Here is a little background on this study.

In 1993, The Impact of School Library Media Centers on Academic Achievement (a.k.a. the first Colorado study) demonstrated on a statewide basis, for the first time, that achievement test scores tend to rise with the size of a school library?s staff and collection, school library expenditures, and the time spent by the school librarian in an instructional role, regardless of the school?s general staffing and funding levels and the community?s socio-economic status.

Between 2000 and 2005, How School Librarians Help Kids Achieve Standards: the Second Colorado Study, and more than a dozen other successor studies, generated remarkably consistent evidence that such relationships continue, especially when academic achievement is measured by state-mandated, standards-based tests. These recent studies further explored the collaborative teaching role that school librarians can play with classroom teachers as well as the additional impact attributable to technology programs that are integrated with, and that expand access to, library resources.

The persuasiveness of all of these earlier studies?the first two Colorado studies and their successors?is limited by the fact that the measure of academic achievement was the percentage of students meeting overall standards for reading, writing, and/or language arts.

Specific information literacy objectives have been integrated into the Colorado Student Assessment Program?s Content Standards. For the first time, LRS researchers now have access to building-level summary data about the performance of students on each of those objectives for making students more critical thinkers about, and users of, information.

In the 2005 Colorado School Library Survey, responding school librarians are being asked new questions about their own activities?questions designed to reveal how school librarians are teaching students to be critical thinkers about, and users of, information.

The Colorado State Library is cooperating with the Library Research Service?a CSL unit operated in partnership with the University of Denver Library and Information Science Program?to provide funding for this research.


3Rs Study Cited in 2005 Bowker Annual Research Review

In “Research and Statistics on Libraries and Librarianship in 2004,” Denise M. Davis (Director, ALA Office for Research and Statistics) cited the Retirement, Retention, and Recruitment study under “Research Relevant to All Libraries” as “one of the more significant studies to be completed in 2004.” (The article begins on p. 433, and the 3Rs reference is on p. 435.)


3Rs Study Article in 2005 Bowker Annual

“Retirement, Retention, and Recruitment: The Future of Librarianship in Colorado” is the title of an article in the 2005 edition of the BOWKER ANNUAL (pp. 446-51). This article provides a brief overview of the findings of the 2004 LRS study of the same name. The study was cited by Denise M. Davis, Director of the ALA Office for Research and Statistics, as “one of the more significant studies to be completed in 2004” (p. 435).


Colorado Libraries to feature The Future of Librarianship in Colorado

Coming soon to a mailbox near you?Colorado Libraries’ summer issue, The Future of Librarianship in Colorado

Using the LRS study, ?Retirement, Retention, and Recruitment: The Future of Librarianship in Colorado? as a starting point, the summer issue of Colorado Libraries includes articles from a wide range of related topics and viewpoints. Look for the following articles:

? Today’s MLIS Students: What’s on Their Minds by Don Dickenson & M. Claire Williamson
? Why am I a Librarian? Conversations with a Cross Section of the Profession by Martin Garnar
? The Resilient Career by Kim Dority
? Back into the Fold: Strategies for Attracting and Retaining Information Professionals within Libraries by Marcy Phelps
? Recruitment and Retention in Colorado’s Libraries: A State Library Perspective by Eugene Hainer
? Who Will Replace the Super Heroes? School Librarians and the Retirement Crisis by Jody Howard
? Meeting Recruitment and Retention Challenges Head On by Rochelle Logan & Art Glover
? The Decision to Retire: A Personal Story by Nancy Bolt

Zeth and I really enjoyed being the guest editors on this edition of Colorado Libraries. We would like to thank the authors for their terrific articles and cooperative spirit, as well the Colorado Libraries’ editors for this learning opportunity.

Let us know what you think of the issue. Oh, and don?t forget to take a close look at the very special cover.

Happy reading.

For more on The Changing Library Workforce go to:

Printable Copies of Completed 2004 School Library Surveys

If you responded to the 2004 Colorado school library survey and did not print out a copy of what you submitted, here’s a way to do that, just as if you had completed the questionnaire in paper. Go to: To access your school’s survey, use the same username and passcode that you used for the survey originally. If you have lost track of those two pieces of information, contact Fabian Maes-Sanford at or 303.866.6906.

Zeth Lietzau, LRS senior research analyst and web editor, came up with this solution for an individual request, but we thought others might find it useful, too.


New Fast Facts on Librarianship and AskColorado

Library Research Service has recently published new issues of Fast Facts:

1. Librarianship in Colorado School Libraries, by Nicolle Steffen (No. 220)
2. Librarianship in Colorado Academic Libraries, by Nicolle Steffen (No. 221)
3. Librarianship in Colorado Public Libraries, by Nicolle Steffen (No. 222)
4. AskColorado’s First Year Online, by Don Dickenson (No. 223)

View these and other Fast Facts at


Diversity Article to Appear in AMERICAN LIBRARIES

AMERICAN LIBRARIES has accepted for publication an article entitled “Racial and Ethnic Diversity of U.S. Library Workers” along with a sidebar based on a longer manuscript titled “U.S. Labor Market for Library Workers.” The full text of the latter work will be published as an issue of FAST FACTS. The AL article and sidebar are expected to appear in the May 2005 issue.


Local Data Collection Forms Requested from Colorado Libraries

We would like to add new pages to that provide links to data collection forms being used by local academic, public, and school libraries in Colorado. Do you have a form for collecting data about reference transactions? computer use? programs and program attendance? meeting room reservations? technology assistance? scheduling class visits to the library? Etc.

Please send links to your forms, if they are already available online, or send Word, Excel, or PDF files that we are free to post on this page. If you cannot share a paper form in any digital format, fax it to us and we will scan it. In short, we will be happy to receive forms in whatever format they already exist.

fax 303 866 6940

Outcome Survey on School Library Impact Studies Launched

Under School Libraries, under Impact Studies, note the addition of a link to a new survey. Since the 2000 publication of How School Librarians Help Kids Achieve Standards: the Second Colorado Study, more than a dozen states have conducted similar studies. We thought it was about time to start documenting how such studies are being used and how they are making a difference for school libraries and librarians. If you work in a school library or with school libraries, please take a minute or two to respond to this survey.

— Keith

2000 Census Data Available on Library Workers by Sex and Race/Ethnicity

One of the best-kept secrets on the U.S. Census website is the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Data Tool. Via a fairly simple interactive interface, it is possible to learn the number of library workers of the three types included in the Standard Occupational Classification (SOC): librarians, library technicians, and library assistants (clerical). For each type of library worker, you can obtain the number of individuals by gender and race/ethnicity. The geography for which data are available goes from U.S. to localities. The one serious drawback is that library workers are not identified by library sector: academic, public, school, special. Still, if you are interested in the diversity issue facing the profession, this is a treasure trove of data.

We’ll be doing some available data research here at the LRS and publishing it both in the library press and our own FAST FACTS later in 2005. Watch for it.

Meanwhile, look at how your own state and community stack up at:


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  • Public Library Statistics & Profiles
    Dive into annual statistics from the Colorado Public Library Annual Report using our interactive tool, results tailored to trustees, and state totals and averages.
  • School Library Impact Studies
    School libraries have a profound impact on student achievement. Explore studies about this topic by LRS and other researchers in our comprehensive guide.
  • Fast Fact Reports
    Looking for a quick rundown of library research? Check out our Fast Facts, which highlight research and statistics about various library topics.


See more @


LRS is part of the Colorado State Library, a unit of the Colorado Department of Education. We design and conduct library research for library and education professionals, public officials, and the media to inform practices and assessment needs. We partner with the Library and Information Science program at University of Denver's Morgridge College of Education to provide research fellowships to current MLIS students.

This project is made possible by a grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

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