Friday, August 29, 2008

Student comparisons, or, Why Penn State students come out ahead

Eric is madly dashing around the office, trying to get ready for a presentation he's giving in Mexico--or he would have posted this himself.

But he knew I was NOT madly dashing around the office. In fact, I'm here on an almost leisurely Friday morning before the three-day weekend. I biked the baby to school today, as we have been doing for the past 2 weeks now. It turns out, it's practically as fast as the car and it may not be saving a ton of gas...but I decided it saves me feeling like a nincompoop for driving the 3 miles twice a day. Plus the fresh air, a bit of exercise, some drama as I turn onto the main road with lots of cars. All good.

But I digress. Penn State took the results from The College Students Perceptions report and compared it with their latest FACAC results, as reported by E-Tech.

Penn State students regularly came out on top, above national averages revealed by the report. Now, there are a number of factors that could be in play here:
  • Penn State students are above average. (Probably quite likely, yes.)
  • Students have gotten much more information literate since the report was published (less likely.)
  • Librarians have become much more aware of the need to bridge the chasm between student perceptions and library offerings since the report was published (Overwhelmingly likely!)

Any of the above--and in combination--I am ecstatic about the possibilities and excited by the potential. With academic life cranking back up next week (if it's not already cranked in your neck of the world), what's your response to these findings, in terms of your own experience?

Also (unrelated) a colleague just forwarded me a link to Wimba Pronto. Looks like a nice way to carry conversations from the classroom to the dorm room and beyond. Even if it's only for virtual office hours--could be a more formalized setting than Facebook and less stilted than Blackboard. (Not that I've actually used Blackboard myself, but so I'm told.)

Enjoy the holiday weekend.

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