Student Demographics as a Lens on Library Usage Patterns and Confidence in Information Literacy

Academic libraries play a critical role at colleges and universities in the advancement of student success. As more underrepresented students continue to make their way into higher education, librarians and library staff must ensure that their services are accessible to all students. The purpose of this study is to learn if gaps exist in students’ library usage patterns and in their confidence in their information literacy based on their demographics. This study was undertaken at a small four-year public university in Southern California. In total, 53 students participated in an online survey that gathered data regarding their library usage patterns and their own confidence in information literacy. Librarians were also interviewed to understand their perspectives on whether student demographics play an important role in how students use various services at their academic library as well as student confidence in their own information literacy.