Assessment in Action: Design Team Member Biographies

The people listed below are working to design, implement and evaluate the program “Assessment in Action: Academic Libraries and Student Success” (AiA), made possible by the Institute for Museum and Library Services. AiA will strengthen the competencies of librarians in campus leadership and data-informed advocacy.

April Cunningham

April Cunningham is Instruction/Information Literacy Librarian at Palomar College in San Marcos, CA. She presents and publishes on issues facing instruction librarians, including innovative pedagogy, faculty collaborations, and working conditions.  Her most recent presentations reported findings from her dissertation on community college librarians’ efforts to sustain instruction programs.  She also has facilitated workshops on action research, introducing librarians to procedures for generating and analyzing data.  At Saddleback College, April has guided the college’s Educational Planning and Assessment Committee in its efforts to assess Information Competency as an institutional learning outcome.  She has served on the LOEX Executive Board and is currently a Director-at-Large for Community Colleges for the California state chapter of ACRL.  April received an EdD in Educational Leadership from California State University, Fullerton, a Master of Library and information Science degree from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a BA in literature and writing from the University of California, San Diego.

Carrie Donovan

Carrie Donovan is Assistant Dean for Research & Instruction Services at Ferris State University’s Ferris Library for Information, Technology & Education where she oversees and coordinates the research and teaching functions of the library, as well as the user engagement and user experience-related operations. Carrie’s professional contribution to information literacy and learning assessment is made evident through her publications and presentations on the topic, as well as her engagement in professional organizations. One of her recent publications is a chapter co-authored with Sara O’Donnell entitled The Tyranny of Tradition: How Information Paradigms Limit Librarians’ Teaching and Student Scholarship in the book Information Literacy and Social Justice: Radical Professional Praxis edited by Shana Higgins & Lua Gregory (Library Juice Press, 2013). Carrie’s current research areas of interest include the review and reward of librarians’ teaching, student-centered learning for library instruction, and critical information literacy. Carrie received her Master of Library Science degree from Indiana University.

Deb Gilchrist

Debra Gilchrist is Vice President for Learning and Student Success at Pierce College, a community college in the Puget Sound region of Washington State.  In addition to academic and student affairs, she leads efforts focused on regional accreditation and achievement of institutional outcomes. She has published and presented for over a decade on outcomes assessment as a tool for change, demonstrating the contributions of academic libraries through assessment of both learning and program impact and quality.  Serving as a collaborator with Lisa Janicke Hinchliffe, they designed and led ACRL’s workshops and webinars on utilizing the Standards for Libraries in Higher Educationfor planning and demonstrating library contributions to student learning and success. She has served ACRL as an inaugural faculty member in the Immersion program since 1999 and was honored with the Miriam Dudley Award in 2007. Debra has a PhD in Higher Education Leadership from Oregon State University and an MLS from University of Denver.

Lisa Janicke Hinchliffe

Lisa Janicke Hinchliffe is Professor, University Library and Coordinator for Information Literacy Services and Instruction at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. A past-president of the Association of College and Research Libraries, ACRL launched the Value of Academic Libraries Initiative during her presidency. She has presented and published widely on the value of academic libraries and library assessment, evaluation, and innovation.  With Debra Gilchrist, Lisa was also the lead designer for ACRL’s training program for the Standards for Libraries in Higher Education. One of her most recent publications is the co-edited book Environments for Students Growth and Development: Libraries and Student Affairs in Collaboration (ACRL, 2012). Lisa is coordinator for information literacy services at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, professor in the University Library, and an adjunct faculty member in the university’s library school. Lisa received her Master of Education and Master of Library and Information Science degrees from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a BA in philosophy from the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota.

Kara Malenfant

Kara Malenfant is Senior Strategist for Special Initiatives at ACRL, where she coordinates government relations advocacy and scholarly communication activities and is the lead staff member on the Value of Academic Libraries initiative. She provides consulting services on organizational development and use of ACRL’s Standards for Libraries in Higher Education. One of her most recent publications is the co-authored report from ACRL's 2011 IMLS Collaborative Planning Grant Connect, Collaborate, and Communicate: A Report from the Value of Academic Libraries Summits. Kara began her position at ACRL in fall of 2005, after working for six years at DePaul University Libraries in Chicago. She holds a PhD in leadership and change from Antioch University, an MS in library science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a BA in English from Allegheny College.

Eric Resnis

Eric Resnis currently serves in a dual appointment at Miami University as Assessment Coordinator in the Center for Teaching, Learning, and University Assessment (CELTUA) and as Organizational Effectiveness Specialist in the Libraries at Miami University in Oxford, OH. Additionally, he assists the Provost’s office with accreditation efforts and training. He has facilitated numerous communities of practice in both information literacy and scholarly communication. Eric currently leads the effort in systematic assessment of Miami’s general education program, of which information literacy is a key competency. He regularly publishes and presents on the value of assessment in meeting information literacy outcomes, communities of practice, and specialized outreach efforts. Eric received a Master of Environment from Miami, an MLIS from Kent State University and a BA in chemistry from The College of Wooster.

John Watts

John Watts is an Undergraduate Learning Librarian at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where he works with faculty and students to integrate the Library into the general education curriculum. He presents and publishes on the topics of creativity in information literacy instruction, student learning outcomes assessment, and peer-assisted learning. He has facilitated librarian workshops on incorporating humor and persona into library instruction as well as workshops for teaching faculty on student learning outcomes assessment and assignment design. He is a member of the LOEX Advisory Council and, along with colleague Joshua Vossler, is a winner of the ACRL Instruction Section Innovation Award. As a member of AiA’s first-year cohort, John worked with campus partners to assess the information literacy skills and attitudes of graduate students who participated in individual research consultations with a librarian. John received his Master of Library Science degree from Indiana University.