Goebel and Anderson win 2010 ACRL IS Innovation Award

Contact: Megan Griffin

ACRL Program Coordinator




For Immediate Release

March 2, 2010

CHICAGO— Nancy Goebel, head librarian, and Dylan Anderson, Web applications specialist, at the University of Alberta Augustana Campus have been selected to receive the 2010 Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) Instruction Section (IS) Innovation Award for developing WASSAIL, an information literacy assessment project. Sponsored by Lexis-Nexis, the annual award recognizes a project that demonstrates creative, innovative or unique approaches to information literacy instruction or programming. A prize of $3,000 and a certificate will be presented to Goebel and Anderson during the 2010 ALA Annual Conference in Washington D.C.

“The Instruction Section Awards committee chose the WASSAIL information literacy assessment project for the ACRL Instruction Section Innovation Award because of the creators’ forward-thinking approach to assessing student learning locally and sharing methods universally,” said award committee Co-Chair Emily Rogers, assistant professor and reference librarian for instruction at Valdosta State University. “Using this software, librarians can systematically track, store and analyze assessment data to measure and improve student learning. Furthermore, in a truly collaborative spirit, the project planners expanded WASSAIL’s utility by making it open source and therefore available for local adaptation by any library. In its purpose, content and potential for widespread use, WASSAIL is truly an innovative contribution to information literacy and instruction librarianship.”

WASSAIL is assessment and survey software developed at the Augustana Campus Library of the University of Alberta. It was released in 2009 as open source software, making it freely available for download and use or modification. It was developed as a tool to assess student learning in Information Literacy courses, excelling at those using pre- and post-tests. It is also used as a general qualitative and quantitative survey tool. Additional information is available at

Goebel earned her M.L.I.S. from the University of Alberta – Edmonton. Anderson earned his B.S. from Augustana University College (now the University of Alberta Augustana Campus).


ACRL is a division of the American Library Association, representing more than 12,500 academic and research librarians and interested individuals. ACRL is the only individual membership organization in North America that develops programs, products and services to meet the unique needs of academic and research librarians. Its initiatives enable the higher education community to understand the role that academic libraries play in the teaching, learning and research environments.