Does Library Use Affect Student Attainment?

Only a few years ago the University of Lincoln was involved in JISC funded ground-breaking research; the results of which suggested that simply visiting an academic library improved final degree classification. Data from over 700 courses using three indicators of library usage (access to e-resources; book loans and access to the library were matched against the student record system and anonymised) suggested that  if someone did not use the library they received lower grades, and a lower degree classification. This research formed part of LIDP TOOLKIT: PHASE 2 (Library Impact Data Project) which set out to explore a number of relationships between undergraduate library usage, attainment and demographic factors. Did you imagine that just visiting the library had such an effect?


Thematic coding – what is it?

I was asked about thematic coding recently and searched the internet for a logical answer. This short video (6 mins) produced in 2010 by Graham R Gibbs from the University of Huddersfield is a useful introduction to this kind of systematic research analysis.

Or there’s a webpage from the University of Auckland’s School of Pysychology, which offers a neat overview of thematic analysis, and suggests various approaches., in which they mention this definition:

  1. Coding: This phase involves generating succinct labels (codes!) that identify important features of the data that might be relevant to answering the research question. It involves coding the entire dataset, and after that, collating all the codes and all relevant data extracts, together for later stages of analysis.

The University of Huddersfield have also compiled an innovative website entitled Template Analysis (sounds like a 70s prog rick album!) designed by Professor Nigel King. This contains much useful information for the keen social sciences researcher. There’s even a Facebook community for the intrepid explorer wishing to explore their own discipline.