CIRI Blog: Assessment and Research Methods


CIRI Blog: Assessment and Research Methods


Reflections on Participating in the CPGE Online Student Conference
A Student Researcher's Journey

Published: May 13th, 2024 by Irene Miller

[Irene was an active participant in CPGE Online Student Conference, the annual college-wide conference that aims to showcase student work and provide a space for students to network. She presented at both the 2023 and 2024 conference and her work drew much attention from the CPGE student community. CIRI had the pleasure of interviewing her about her reflections on the conference experience.]

Can you please tell us a bit about yourself?

My name is Irene and I live in Washington State. After completing a seemingly arbitrary collection of courses including several foreign languages, biological sciences, and


Fostering the Cultivation of Practices in Multimodal and Culturally Responsive Literature Review Research Methods

Published: April 17th, 2024 by Dr. Kristen Radsliff Rebmann

When I talk to students about their program of study, scholarship in LIS, and their identity as researchers, they often tell me that they have no interest in doing research and that they just want to be librarians. Furthermore, I’ve been asked why the iSchool has developed a required course in research methods: INFO 285.  In response to these queries, I try to emphasize that research absolutely is in our wheelhouse as information professionals (a librarian superpower) and that students should take the opportunity in


Research Methods Course Focusing on Historical Research

Published: October 18, 2022 by Dr. Donald Westbrook

I thoroughly enjoy teaching the Historical Research section for INFO 285: Applied Research Methods at SJSU. Students come into this class from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds and no prior academic training in history is required. As I like to say near the beginning of the course, the study of history involves much more than memorizing “facts and figures.” Historical research is interdisciplinary, multifaceted, and global in reach.


Research Methods Course Focusing on Program Evaluation

Published: May 17, 2022 by Jennifer Sweeney

I’m excited to share a reflection on my section of INFO 285, Applied Research Methods: Evaluating Programs and Services with you all here.  I developed and started teaching this course at SJSU in 2018. Teaching this course has been one of the most fulfilling aspects of my work life so far.


Research Methods Course Focusing on Action Research

Published: November 22, 2021 by Dr. Renée Jefferson

I love teaching the action research special topics section of INFO 285: Applied Research Methods because it is engaging, empowering, and motivating.  It is engaging to work with students as they discover how action research empowers them to examine policies and practices using sound methodologies, and how it motivates them to make evidence based decisions.  In this course, we cover the fundamental principles, processes, value


Qualitative Research and Identity as a First Generation Student

Published: January 27, 2021 by Christina Advento

Brene Brown, a researcher noted for her work on shame and vulnerability, writes that she “fell in love with the richness and depth of qualitative research” and “couldn’t resist the idea of research as storycatching.” As a teacher of high school English and Psychology, and a current MLIS student, I also love research and the power of a story. I was fortunate enough to be chosen by Anthony Bernier to work on his research project, “Recasting First Generation Experience for LIS Success,” but I never expected to find research that spoke to me so wholeheartedly. 


Assessing Scholarly Communication Services – An IMLS-funded Project

The Research Lifecycle Graph from the University of Central Florida

Published: May 20, 2020 by Dr. Lili Luo

I’m a member of a great project team that’s working to investigate the best practices of assessing academic libraries’ scholarly communication services , and make recommendations for better tracking academic libraries’ engagement in supporting research and scholarship on academic campuses. The project is funded by IMLS and led by wonderful librarians from Sacramento State University and San Jose State University.


How We Made the Grade: The Journey from Lived Experience to Conference Presentation 

Published: February 24, 2020 by Enid Ocegueda and Michelle Peralta


Though online programs do their best to create educational environments comparable to brick-and-mortar classroom settings for its students, the virtual nature of distance learning can be challenging for students on many fronts, especially for those seeking professional networks, mentorship, and a cohort experience.  Current research on the experiences of people of color in Library and Information Science (LIS) programs, especially as they relate to diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives, tended to focus on students in traditional, in-person programs. We were interested in researching if and how our experiences as people of color at SJSU iSchool differed from those in other online LIS programs. 


Language Style Matching as a Measure of Librarian/Patron Engagement in Email Reference Transactions

Published: January 23, 2020 by Ann Agee 

When two people are deep in conversation, they unconsciously mimic each other. Both will cross their arms, pick up their coffee cups, or touch their hair as they talk. Research shows that this mimicry is a signal of the high level of engagement between the conversationalists (Scheflen, 1964). Using a technique called language style matching (LSM), social psychologists discovered that similar synchronization appears in written correspondence (Niederhoffer & Pennebaker, 2002). Correspondents with a high level of engagement use similar words, down to the level of pronouns, articles, and prepositions. It is these function words that are used to calculate an LSM score. High LSM scores have been shown to be indicative of a sense of perceived support.


Research Methods Course Focusing on Technology

Published: December 4, 2019 by Jason Kaltenbacher

Beginning this current (Fall) 2019 semester, I started teaching a technology management special topics section of INFO 285: Applied Research Methods. This course is designed to support students who are interested in developing a comprehensive research proposal that relates to a technology interest/issue. Like the other research methods courses, students learn the fundamentals of social research design and how to produce a viable and independent research proposal.


SJSU’s Student Research Journal: Supporting Teaching and Research at iSchool

Published: September 12, 2019 by Margaret Snyder, Editor-in-Chief, Student Research Journal

Want to be dialed-in to career trends, up your research game, and contribute to the library and information science (LIS) conversation? Look no further than the Student Research Journal (SRJ)San Jose State University’s (SJSU’s) only graduate student-run, open-access, double-blind, peer-reviewed academic journal featuring graduate student research and inviting contributions from prestigious researchers and movers and shakers in the LIS field. SRJ is about to celebrate their 10th birthday after an amazing 2018 milestone year eclipsing 100,000 downloads (read the issue here) and thrilled to introduce a new student resource blog to support SJSU MLIS and MARA students.


Libraries as Place: A Response to Changing Needs

Published: October 31, 2016 by Michael Stephens

We have explored the foundations of socio-technological change and what the library as learning laboratory looks like.  Just as the availability of new ways of learning are possible, so have libraries begun to use networked capabilities to change their approach to satisfying the learning needs of the people in their communities. The library profession has also made strides in describing and typifying the learning needs of those they serve. Information literacy skills have long been taught by librarians across diverse settings in various institutions. Recent years have brought other designations to describe the impact of technology on such skills, such as transliteracy, metaliteracy, and digital literacies. Jenkins (2009) utilized  the term trans-media navigation as a descriptor for the new skills required for the new media landscape, including moving through multiple channels of media to learn about current and past events or experience stories. It could be argued, however, with ubiquitous access to networked communication technologies, these skills are now simply life literacies or how we make sense of the world. Simply, general human interaction with information. 


A recent international research collaboration

Published: September 30, 2015 by Dr. Lili Luo

International collaboration is always a refreshing and even enlightening experience to me. I have worked with two librarians from Tsinghua University Library in China on a couple of projects and absolutely enjoyed it. I have known them for more than 10 years so we have a very efficient and pleasant relationship. Last year when I was at IFLA, I met a librarian from Ghana and we had good conversations about library research. This spring we worked on a project together to evaluate the reference services at University of Education, Winneba (UEW) in Ghana. We decided to approach the evaluation from the user perspective, and identified the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) based on the RUSA Guidelines for Behavioral Performance.


Medical Volunteering and International Development

Published: August 25, 2015 by Dr. Chris Hagar

One of my main research interests focuses on information perspectives of digital volunteering in humanitarian aid. My work with colleagues Dr. Nina Laurie, Chair in Development, Newcastle University, UK and Dr. Matt Baillie-Smith, Professor of Development, Northumbria University, UK concerns international medical volunteering. Cross-disciplinary collaboration (medical, geography, sociology and information science) is urgently needed to better understand global health volunteering. My expertise in crisis information management helped my colleagues (mentioned above) to identify a gap in their work and, as a result, we have discussed ways in which we can take forward a joint agenda on information/knowledge sharing and digital volunteering in international development settings.


Setting the research agenda

Published: April 9, 2015 by Dr. Lili Luo

A couple of months ago I gave a talk at SJSU Gateway PhD students’ virtual residency about how to set the research agenda. To prepare for that talk, I looked back in the past 11 years and thought about how I have been planning, conducting and disseminating my research since I was a doctoral student. I was able to summarize a few useful (hopefully) tips from my experience and share them with our PhD students. I’m posting them here too.