Graduate student confidence following a for-credit systematic review course pilot
Keywords:systematic review, instruction, student-centered learning, faculty librarians
Background: In 2015, librarians at Purdue University began fielding requests from many disciplines to consult or collaborate on systematic review projects, and in 2016, health sciences librarians led the launch of a formal systematic review service. In 2019, Purdue University Libraries was reorganized as the Libraries and School of Information Studies (PULSIS) and assigned its own course designation, ILS. The increase in calls for systematic review services and the ability to teach ILS courses inspired the development of a credit-bearing ILS systematic review course.
Case presentation: We designed, taught, and assessed a one-credit systematic review course for graduate students, using a backward-design course development model and applying self-determination theoretical concepts into lessons, assignments, and assessments. Using qualitative pre- and post-assessments, we discovered a variety of themes around student motivations, expectations, and preferences for the course. In quantitative post-class assessments, students reported improved confidence in all systematic review processes, with the highest confidence in their ability to choose and use citation management managers, describe the steps in the systematic review process, and understand the importance of a reproducible and systematic search strategy.
Conclusions: We considered our pilot a success. Next steps include testing 2- and 3-credit- hour models and working to formally integrate the course into departmental and certificate curriculums. This case report provides a model for course design principles, learning outcomes, and assessments that librarians and library administrators can use to adjust their systematic review services.
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