In January of 2012 a ten question survey about the Award of Accomplishment in Legal Research Skills program was sent out to all current participants. 25 of the 189 students surveyed responded to the survey. Results will be used to shape course offerings and assignments in 2012-2013.
The survey results are attached.
According to the 2012 LSSSE survey 91% of law students reported they were satisfied or very satisfied with the library assistance they received. Below is a breakdown of the satisfaction percentage results by class.
Additionally, 93% of the students recognized that the law librarians played some part in the development of their legal research skills. A detailed chart of the percentage results by class is available below.
Reference librarians created quizzes to complement the legal research and writing library trainings. Select Legal Research and Writing faculty elected to give the quizzes to their students. The average grades on the quizzes were Bs.
With reference librarians' increased presence in the classroom and community, patrons are using law library resources at a higher rate. This table provides an example of the correlation between librarian presentations and resource use.
In the fall of 2011, a Faculty Survey was distributed in both paper and electronic format to the faculty. The survey contained both open ended and multiple choice questions about the departments and services provided in the law library in the last year.
93% of the survey participants utilized circulation services during the year. All indicated the services provided at the circulation desk as positive. 13 faculty members described their circulation experience as excellent and 1 listed it as good.
Some additional comments shared by the faculty about their circulation experiences: “they are great", “Terrific Staff Past and Present!” “My biggest concern is I do not know the circulation staff especially non-directors.”
Only half of the faculty participants used ILL but of those who had 89% describe their experience as excellent. A lone faculty member described the experience as good.
86% of the faculty participants requested research assistance. Requests were made throughout the day and on weekends. 100% placed a request during the afternoon. The next peak time for reference requests occurred in the morning. Reference assistance is unique to each individual faculty member. It is requested in a variety of ways and on range of topics. The two charts below explore some of the ways requests for assistance were placed and on what topics.
This chart provides data on the kind of research requests made in the last year.
Additionally, faculty members had the opportunity to supply comments about the reference assistance received and stated, “In the past I have received excellent assistance” “Great People/Great Service!” “Excellent assistance was provided.”
Other surveys completed in the 2011-2012 year by the law school faculty also reflected a positive assessment of the materials in the law library collection. The participants believe the collection supports both their courses and scholarship.
Advanced Legal Research is a for credit course team taught by reference librarians. The focus of the fall course was legal research in American law and the spring course was legal research in international law. At the end of each semester the law school requests each student fill out a course evaluation. Below is helpful content mined from those evaluations.
Advanced Legal Research:Fall
Students were asked about the instructors knowledge of the course material, in particular the professors depth of understanding of the subject and the level of preparation. 80% of the students felt their instructors knowledge was exceptional and the rest believed it was very good. When asked about the in-class performance of the professors, 9 of the students viewed it as exceptional, 4 as very good and 2 as good. An overwhelming majority of the students in the class rated the instructors' overall teaching ability as exceptional. The students also had the opportunity to provide written feedback about the course and instruction. Some select comments were, "Love the class very helpful/practical", "Peoples was fantastic. I learned a lot from this course & I think it should be required", "Katie Brown-Awesome presenter, Darla-Super knowledgeable, Peoples-Deep understanding of research tactics" and "Great Class!"
Advanced Legal Research:Spring
The Spring Advanced Legal Research class was taught using a new format. Students were required to take quizzes at the start of each class on the weekly readings. They created a LibGuide as their final instead of taking a traditional final exam. The majority of the students in the course did not have a background in international law. The professors often found themselves teaching both substantive international law and international law research techniques and strategies in the same class. In the evaluations, students expressed frustration with the format change, long reading assignments, quizzes, and tone of some of the professors. Although the majority of the students in the course had issues with an element of the course, 7 of the 9 students believed the professors possessed a very good in depth understanding of the subject and level of preparation for class.
In the Spring of 2013, the Advanced Legal Research class on international law will not be offered. The reference librarians are investigating offering a state specific legal research course. The states they hope to focus on are Oklahoma, Texas, and Kansas.