Faculty & Staff Publications

Publication Date



Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Library and Information Science


The article describes an effort to assess the information literacy skills of entering first-year college students. An instrument was developed and information was gathered on students' experience and comfort in conducting library research as well as their perceived competence with specific information literacy skills. In addition, students completed a skills test to assess specific knowledge and skills relating to information literacy. Entering first-year students generally self-reported their skills to be less than "excellent." This finding was supported by the results of the skills test. Strengths and weaknesses in information literacy skills are reported, as well as implications for librarians who assess and teach these skills to students.

Document Type

Accepted Version


This article is the author-created version that incorporates referee comments. It is the accepted-for-publication version. The content of this version may be identical to the published version (the version of record) save for value-added elements provided by the publisher (e.g., copy editing, layout changes, or branding consistent with the rest of the publication).


This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Research Strategies. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Research Strategies, volume 20, issue 4, pages 458-468, 2005, doi:10.1016/j.resstr.2006.12.016.

Original Citation

Jean Caspers and Steven Mark Bernhisel
What do freshmen really know about research? Assess before you teach.
Research Strategies, 2005, volume 20, issue 4, pages 458-468

CaspersResearchStrategies2005Appendix.pdf (564 kB)
This file contains appendices A-D, as referenced in the paper.



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