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Entries in Impact of school libraries on learning (2)


Impact of school libraries on learning 

Impact of school libraries on learning

On the 19th of June I attended a workshop on the impact of school libraries on learning. It was held at Edinburgh Central Library and was led by Dorothy Williams, Caroline Wavell and Katie Cooper. It was prompted by the publication of a report, commissioned by the Scottish Library and Information Council.

It is a follow up to a study completed in 2001 and reviews some 64 impact studies, undertaken between 2001 and 2013. Rather disturbingly most of these studies were undertaken in the US with much less work being done in the UK. The evidence from Scotland is thin with more work needing to be done in this area. However positive outcomes from the study are:

  • Higher test or exam scores equating to academic attainment: this includes academic attainment in the form of higher standardised test scores in reading, language arts, history and maths, and better grades in curriculum assignments or exams;
  • Successful curriculum or learning outcomes, including information literacy: this includes higher quality project work, the development and practice of information literacy, increased knowledge and reading development;
  • Positive attitudes towards learning: including increased motivation, improved attitude towards learning tasks, self-esteem, and wider reading for pleasure

Most of the attendees were school librarians. The day was spent identifying impact factors and planning collection of evidence to support impact studies in Scotland. Priority areas for impact measurement included values, achievement/attainment, the reading culture and learning through information (information literacy).  In the afternoon we discussed planning for collection of evidence in Scottish schools. My group discussed information literacy so I felt I had something to contribute.

It was interesting after attending the DigiScotFest event the same issues to do with website blocking were discussed at length.

John Crawford



Workshop event: Impact of school libraries on learning in Edinburgh 19th June & Aberdeen 3rd September 

Workshop event which will explore the findings from RGU's recent (2013) research for SLIC on the impact of school libraries on learning and attainment

Location and dates:

Attendance is free but numbers will be strictly limited - so book early!

For further information or to book a place at one of these events contact