AASL's sold-out Fall Forum addressed student assessment

Contact: Kathy Agarwal
Communications Specialist


For Immediate Release
October 24, 2006

AASL's sold-out Fall Forum addressed student assessment

CHICAGO - "Assessing Student Learning in the School Library Media Center" was the theme of the sold-out American Association of School Librarians (AASL) 2006 Fall Forum held at the Crowne Plaza at the Crossings in Warwick, Rhode Island, October 13-15, 2006.
Over 500 participants from around the country explored the role of school library media specialists in assessment of student learning during the focused one-and-a-half day institute.

"The Fall Forum was a great success," said AASL President Cyndi Phillip.
"Assessment of student learning is an important component of our jobs as library media specialists and educators and the Fall Forum addressed many assessment issues.
We have gotten excellent feedback from the attendees about the relevance of the discussions and the expertise of the facilitators."

The Fall Forum included nationally renowned speakers and experts on assessment, including Violet Harada, professor of library and information science at the University of Hawaii, Barbara Stripling, past president of AASL and director of library services for the New York City Department of Education, Marjorie Pappas, writer, consultant, and virtual professor of library science, and Allison Zmuda, senior education specialist for the Capitol Regional Education Council (CREC) in Hartford, Conn.

The discussions covered topics from what school librarians teach and how they can determine the impact of their teaching on demonstrated student performance to developing units and lesson plans with classroom teachers.
Participants also gained hands-on experience using assessment tools for information literacy and inquiry learning and explored the reasons why the library media center is at the heart of a school's mission to help all students achieve at high levels.

"The Fall Forum on Assessment earned an A+ for effort, attitude, and achievement in my personal grade book," said Alice Yucht, Forum participant and AASL's Blog Editor.
"Presenters demonstrated authentic strategies for measuring ways in which the school library program contributes to student achievement, and the interactive workshops gave participants the skills to understand and utilize the kinds of assessment tools that drive current school reform.
This is the best kind of professional development: a combination of big goals and concrete, practical techniques to implement immediately." For more insight from attendees, see the AASL
blog (

The 2006 Fall Forum was planned by AASL's Teaching for Learning Committee, chaired by Catherine Marriott, and included Debbie Abilock, Sharon Coatney, Linda Z. Cooper, Linda Kay Corey, Judith Dzikowski, Kathleen Ellis, Gail Formanack, Karen Gavigan, Bonnie Grimble, Marjorie Pappas, Anita Vance, Jacqueline R. White and Irene Kwidzinski, AASL Board Liaison.

The institute's sponsors included Libraries Unlimited, Walden Media and Coughlan Publishing, whose imprints include Capstone Press, Compass Point Books and Picture Window Books.

The American Association of School Librarians (
www.aasl.org), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), promotes the improvement and extension of library media services in elementary and secondary schools as a means of strengthening the total education program.
Its mission is to advocate excellence, facilitate change and develop leaders in the school library media field.