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Megan Dempsey, Instructional Services Librarian

Professional profile, online research consultations, and more information about Megan, Professor, MSLIS, MA

Faculty Research Grant 2021-2022

My faculty research grant for AY21-22 was to support the work of analyzing data and publishing results from a cross-institutional survey of first-year college students that was administered at RVCC and five other NJ institutions of higher education in Spring, 2021. Through the summer and fall of 2021, I worked with the other investigators to conduct qualitative and quantitative data analysis using Qualtrics and Excel. As part of the larger research team, I was primarily responsible for analyzing questions pertaining to the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Educationand determining what relationships exist between students’ prior experiences with their high school library/librarians and their understanding of the information literacy concepts of the Framework.I contributed to the research paper that has been submitted for peer-review to the Journal of Academic Librarianship. In addition, a research summary of the First-Years Meet the Frames project has been submitted to the C&RL News, the official newsmagazine of the Association of College & Research Libraries, with publication anticipated for summer, 2022. During that work, the six academic librarians who are part of the research team (including myself) noticed patterns in responses associated with the fact that students took the survey while they were still experiencing COVID-19 restrictions and adjustments. Through further analysis, we found that students who did not interact with an academic librarian were less likely to use library resources, had more problems accessing information, and felt more overwhelmed by the quantity of resources and services offered by the library. Our paper, “Intentional Librarian-Student Interactions During COVID-19: A Clear Bridge to Developing First-Year Student IL Skills,” has been peer-reviewed and accepted for publication in the Journal of Information Literacy for publication this June. Another paper under development using this data is being written by me and Joan Dalrymple, the librarian from Bergen County Community College who is part of our research team. We are currently comparing responses between the community college students and the four-year. students and have begun to identify some trends. We plan to submit the results of this research initially to Community College Journal of Research & Practicefor peer review. We feel strongly that our findings are not only relevant to academic librarians but to all faculty teaching first-year students at community colleges because information literacy skills are cross-disciplinary and not limited to the domain of the library.

Sabbatical - Fall 2019

I was granted a faculty sabbatical for the Fall 2019 semester to study the impact of open educational resources on student performance at RVCC. My sabbatical research addressed these questions:

  1. Is there a significant difference in student achievement for students in OER courses compared to courses taught by the same instructor in previous semesters using commercial textbooks?  
  2. Is there a significant difference in student achievement for Pell recipients, non-white students, and first-time students in OER courses compared to previous semester courses using commercial textbooks? 

The full report can be downloaded below.

Faculty Research Grant - AY 2012-2013

In 2012-13 I was awarded a faculty research grant to create information literacy learning objects, which were made available to faculty on the library website, in WedStudy, and on the library’s YouTube channel. One of the videos, “Why We Cite: Understanding Citation Styles,” was discovered by a librarian at LIU Brooklyn who contacted me for permission to embed the video in one of her own research guides. The video "How to Make a Hanging Indent" has been viewed more than 229,000 times.