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Haves, Halves, and Have-Nots: School Libraries and Student Achievement in California

In Illinois (Lance, Hamilton-Pennell & Rodney, 2005), the researchers found significant
positive correlations between library visits and writing scores at the middle school, and between
visits and reading and ACT scores at the high school level. These correlations were significant
in partial correlations controlling for four separate school and community variables, although no
numerical data were reported. In Wisconsin, though, Smith (2006) found significant positive
correlations at the fourth grade when controlling for limited English proficient (LEP) students
and at the 10th grade when controlling for LEP students, teacher/pupil ratio, and percent minority
students. See Table 3 for a summary of results.
Table 3
Wisconsin State Test Scores and Library Visits per Student.: Partial Correlations (Smith, 2006)
Grade State Test Correlation p Covariable
4 Reading .109* .021 LEP students
10 Reading .142* .027 percent minority students
10 Reading .141* .028 teacher/pupil ratio
10 Reading .153* .017 LEP students
* p <.05
The Florida (Baumbach, 2003) study included library visits as a discrete independent
variable in multiple regression analysis. Baumbach (2003) found significant correlations at the
10th grade level with both the state reading test (R2 change= .020, standardized beta
coefficient=.146) and ACT scores (R2 change =.059, standardized beta coefficient= .222), using
school factors as the other independent variables.
Collection Size
Other early studies reveal correlations between student achievement and both access to
the library itself and to sizable collections. Flanagan (1962, as cited in Minor, 1985), gathered


Achterman, Douglas L. Haves, Halves, and Have-Nots: School Libraries and Student Achievement in California. Denton, Texas. UNT Digital Library. Accessed January 21, 2017.