AASL Resource Guides for School Library Media Program Development

Student Achievement

School Library Media Centers: Selected results from the Education Longitudinal Study of 2002

The U.S. National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) recently released some of the findings from a longitudinal study of 10th graders. Among the findings are that students in the lowest quartile of composite test scores make less focused use of library resources, while students in the middle and highest three quartiles of composite test scores reported higher use of library resources for assignments, in-school projects and research papers.

School Libraries Work! Danbury, Conn.: Scholastic Library Publishing, 2006.

This research foundation paper brings together position statements from a variety of organizations and findings from nearly a decade of empirical studies that cite the measurable impact of school libraries and library media specialists on learning outcomes. The report shows that school libraries administered by certified library media specialists are a powerful force in the lives of America’s children.

Lance, Keith Curry, and David V. Loertscher. Powering Achievement: School Library Media Programs Make a Difference: The Evidence Mounts. 2nd ed. San Jose, Calif.: Hi Willow Research and Publishing, 2002.

Primer for presenting research studies to groups of library media specialists, teachers, administrators and others; starting discussions based on the research of school library media programs with these audiences; implementing the research findings and measuring impact. Includes handouts that may be reproduced for these purposes. Based on the research from Colorado (I and II), Alaska, Iowa, Pennsylvania, Texas, Oregon, Massachussetts and New Mexico.

Lance, Keith Curry, Marcia J. Rodney and Christine Hamilton-Pennell. How School Librarians Help Kids Achieve Standards. Denver: Library Research Service, 2000.

Executive summary of the second "Colorado Study" conducted by Keith Curry Lance and the Library Research Service.

Lance, Keith Curry. "The Impact of School Library Media Centers on Academic Achievement." School Library Media Quarterly 22, no. 3 (Spring 1994): 167-170, 172.

Keith Curry Lance, director of the Library Research Service, highlights the major findings and their importance to school library media practitioners, researchers and advocates of the original "Colorado study." Originally published in School Library Media Quarterly, the article has been reprinted online in School Library Media Research.

Other State Studies:

Todd, Ross J. "Irrefutable Evidence: How to prove you boost student achievement." School Library Journal, April 1, 2003.

Todd, director of the Center for International Scholarship in School Libraries at Rutgers University, introduces systematic approaches to documenting school library media program impact on student achievement.

"Proof of the Power"

November 19, 1999 Fast Facts (Library Research Service) bulletin on the research methodology for all three state studies, finding, and future implications. Other Fast Facts of interest to school library media advocates include:

"Technology Counts '98: Putting School Technology To the Test"

October 1, 1998 special report on the effectiveness of technology in the nation's schools.