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Conducting a Comparative Assessment of Doctoral Students' Library Research Skills through the Development and Testing of New Citation Analysis Tools on Ed.D. Applied Dissertations

Grant Winners

  • Johanna Tunon, Ed.D. – Alvin Sherman Library
  • Bruce Brydges, Ed.D. – Abraham S. Fischler School of Education


  • H. Wells Singleton – Abraham S. Fischler School of Education
  • Vice President Donald Riggs – Alvin Sherman Library


2004 Faculty Research and Development Grant Award Winner.

The aim of this study is to develop and empirically validate objective and subjective criteria for conducting bibliometric citation analysis used to assess reference lists of graduate doctoral education dissertations and demonstrate that these criteria can unobtrusively generate valid and reliable data establishing evidence of (1) students' research skills, (2) the efficacy of library training methodology, and (3) the generalizability of criteria for data collection to other graduate institutions/programs.

This study will establish both objective and subjective criteria for bibliometric citation analysis and validate criteria through focus groups comprised of active adjunct faculty dissertation committee chairs. The study will analyze the graduate doctoral dissertations of two complete sets of intervention groups who experienced diverse methods of library research training. Through analysis of the data, the study will establish whether bibliometric citation analysis can be conducted unobtrusively with an acceptable degree of interrater reliability between subject specialists and library technicians, whether bibliometric citation analysis can be used to assess students' research skills, whether differing methods of library training affect the overall quality of graduate dissertation reference lists, and whether data gathered can inform library collection strategies. The results of this study will inform the graduate literature research process through the introduction of criteria for bibliometric citation analysis and also inform an economy of resources and methods to be used instruction of library research skill training. Through the dissemination of this research, we hope to receive feedback from the academic community for the further refining of bibliometric citation analysis criteria towards the improved quality of graduate dissertations.

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