Philosophy and process

In Fall 2018, the LIS faculty distilled and approved the latest revision to our LIS Program Assessment Philosophy and Process.

Each step of our curriculum assessment process is linked with our Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) and Program Goals. SLOs 1-4 directly link to Program Goal 1 (Provide a curriculum that meets the evolving demands of the job market for librarians and other information professionals), and SLO 5 links with Program Goal 5 (Strengthen the emphasis on Hawaiʻi and the Asia-Pacific region in teaching, research, and service). Every course is aligned with the particular SLOs it covers via a matrix.

For the culminating experience, the ePortfolio and oral exam scenarios are also linked with our SLOs, and students are evaluated along the same dimensions (exceed-meet-approach-do not meet). We use this data to revise both the curriculum and the oral exams themselves.

Thesis students are assessed on specific elements of their research, including their problem statement, literature review, method, results, and the quality of their written thesis and oral defense; the evaluation form can be found on p. 7 of our thesis policy and FAQ.

Retention and persistence

From Fall 2013-Fall 2018, our student retention was 83% after one year, 74% after two years.

Time to degree

From Fall 2009-Fall 2018, the overall graduation rate has been 89%, with average time to graduation between 2.0 – 2.5 years.

Job placement

In our 2018 Alumni survey, 60 graduates were contacted and 21 responded (35%).  81% of respondents reported that they were working in an LIS-related professional position within 12 months of graduation, primarily in academic (29%), public (29%), archives (14%), special (14%) or school (10%) libraries.  Most alumni (62%) work in Hawaii, with 24% working on the US mainland.

Placement information for our 43 school library media specialist graduates since 2009 is reported in our 2015 ALA Accreditation Program Presentation (Appendix 2-17, Practicum Report, section E).

In the 2017 Library Journal survey, we sent a request to the 29 alumni (26 women and 3 men) who graduated during the prior year. Sixteen of the 29 students completed the survey (55.2%), which was the ninth highest rate among reporting schools. Of the 16 respondents, 11 were employed full-time, and reported salaries ranging between $41, 244 and $53,510, with an average of $45,439.

Additional data is also available via the Library Journal Placement & Salaries Survey.

Job performance and advancement

We survey employers of our graduates every 5 years, most recently in 2019.  We ask employers to indicate the extent to which UH LIS graduates are able to demonstrate skills in three broad areas, and over 70% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed with all three of these statements of our graduates’ abilities:

  • Provide information services for a range of users’ needs
  • Practice ethical responsibilities of the profession in providing services and resources
  • Manage and work effectively in collaborative problem solving and team projects

Respondents also indicated that UHM LIS graduates demonstrate consistent strengths in the following:

  • Inclusion of indigenous and local knowledge to inform library practices
  • Passion for the field and a deep interest in serving patrons
  • Critical thinking and ability to analyze data
  • Teamwork
  • Reference services and information retrieval
  • Web design and digital preservation
  • Community engagement and customer service skills
  • Connections with professional communities
  • Ability to meet a range of user needs
  • Work ethic
  • Overall professionalism

Complete responses, including job advancement data, can be found in our 2019 Employer Survey Summary.

For the 2013-2014 review period, the Program also requested access to principals’ ratings of LIS graduates on the Hawai‘i DOE’s Educator Effectiveness System (EES). The EES uses a 4-point rating scale and ten of eleven graduates hired since 2009 were rated with the following criteria:

  • Highly effective: met or exceeded at least 90% to 100% of expected target.
  • Effective: met or exceeded at least 75% to 89% of expected target.
  • Developing: met or exceeded at least 60% to 74% of expected target.
  • Ineffective: met less than 60% of expected target.

Nine of the ten librarians received “effective” or “highly effective” ratings on foci they had selected for the evaluation.  Licensure pass rates (as applicable) were 100%.

Program and outcomes assessment

Annual assessment reports submitted to the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Graduate Division are also available for review: