Assessment is critical as a means of improving teaching. Seeking to develop appropriate mechanisms for evaluation of instruction, Research & Instructional Services Department members have created a wide variety of tools over the years. This allows one to pick the approach best suited for your specific needs. The preferred mechanism for assessment at this time is via web-based survey forms since it facilities collection and sharing of data. More on the history and evolution of assessment at Virginia Tech can be found in Jennifer Nardine and Carolyn Meier's article "Assessing the One-Shot Instruction Session: Leveraging Technology for Optimum Results." Other tools can be found below along with a brief descriptive information on each.
The responses for these focus on content, presentation skills, and overall student perception of the session.
These attempt to determine what students remember and/or how well they were able to apply what they learned. Some are designed to be used after students have begun actually working on their papers or projects rather than at the conclusion of the instructional session.
Using a General Research Skills Survey as a pre-test can help gauge the basics of what students do and don't already know. A Customized Research Skills Survey works much the same but uses a design and a set of questions that are highly tailored to the needs and resources of a specific discipline. Other potentially helpful preparatory tools include a brief Class Profile and Background Knowledge Probe.
Library tours can be scheduled for classes or groups in order to familiarize them with Newman Library. Locations and services are highlighted. For more information about these options, please contact Tracy Hall.
Our primary tour option for individuals is a self-guided, audio tour with a graded quiz that can be used to show attendance for classes that require participation or give extra credit.
The tour consists of 16 different information stops/points, accessible by using a device to scan a QR code. Once scanned using the camera in your mobile device and its built-in reader or a separate app, your device will play an audio track (with some photos/videos) explaining the different services that are offered in Newman Library and how our collections are organized. The audio track at each stop will direct you to the next stop, where you will scan the next QR code.
To take the tour you will either need to use a smartphone or tablet, have access to Virginia Tech's wireless network (we recommend wireless over a cellular data network since several sections of the library get little to no cellular signal), and have headphones or earbuds to hear the narration. If you do not have a suitable device, then you can check out an iPad at the Circulation Desk. Circulation staff will show you how to use their iPads and where to start the tour.