Student Learning through Ohio School Libraries (OELMA)
The research study Student Learning through Ohio School Libraries was funded by the State Library of Ohio through aLibrary Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant from thefederal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to theOhio Educational Library Media Association (OELMA), and wascoordinated through Leadership for School Libraries (L4SL), acoalition of OELMA, INFOhio (the state K-12 network), the OhioDepartment of Education and The State Library of Ohio. The study sought tounderstand how students benefit from school libraries throughelaborating conceptions of help, and providing some measure of the extent of these helps, as perceived by students and faculty.The study, conducted from October, 2002 through December, 2003, looked at 39 effective school libraries across Ohio. It collected information through two web-based surveys with 48 questions & one open-ended critical incident. It surveyed 13,123 students in Grades 3 to 12 and 879 teaching faculty.
Full details, including survey instruments, are available at the Ohio Educational Library Media Association website:
Student Learning Through Ohio School Libraries: The Ohio Research Study Fact Sheet. Available at:
Todd, R. & Kuhlthau, C. (2005). Student learning through Ohio school libraries, Part 1: How effective school libraries help students. School Libraries Worldwide, 11(1), 63-88.
This paper provides an overview of the Student Learning through Ohio School Libraries research study, undertaken from October 2002 through December 2003. The study involved 39 effective school libraries across Ohio; the participants included 13,123 students in Grades 3 to 12 and 879 faculty. The focus question of the study was "How do school libraries help students with their learning in and away from school?" The findings, both quantitative and qualitative, showed that effective school libraries help students with their learning in many different ways across the different grade levels. Effective school libraries play an active rather than passive role in students' learning. The concept of "help" was understood in two ways: helps-as-inputs, or help that engages students in the process of effective learning through the school library, and helps-as outcomes/impacts, or demonstrated outcomes of meaningful learning:academic achievement and personal agency. The study shows that an effective school library is not just informational, but transformational and formational, leading to knowledge creation, knowledge production, knowledge dissemination and knowledge use, as well as the development of information values.
Todd, R. & Kuhlthau, C. (2005). Student learning through Ohio school libraries, Part 2: Faculty perceptions of effective school libraries. School Libraries Worldwide, 11(1), 89-110.
This paper focuses on the perceptions of school principals and teaching faculty in relation to the school library and the helps it provides to students. Set against a review of current literature, it examines data provided by 879 faculty in 39 elementary, middle and high schools of Ohio as part of the Student Learning through Ohio School Library research study. In a parallel survey to the Impacts on Learning Survey for students participating in this research, the Perceptions of Learning survey for sought to gather faculty perceptions of the helps provided by the school library to their students. This paper presents a summary of the findings, provides a comparison with the student data, and addresses the concept of evidence of school library helps as observed by the teaching faculty.