The Relationship Between School Library and Students’ Performance in Schools with Low Socio-economic and Cultural Backgrounds

By: Rita Marzoli   Ornella Papa  

This paper deepens the relationship between the school library and students’ performance, taking into account socio-economic and cultural backgrounds. Socio-cultural and economic characteristics are an important predictor of students’ performance, in this work we explore the role of the School Libraries in schools with low and medium low ESCS. The ESCS index is based on specific variables from the Student Questionnaire administered in grades 5 and 10; the schools involved are 7,326 of which 5,049 primary schools and 2,277 secondary schools. The information on the School libraries comes from the School Questionnaire compiled by the School Principal in the course of the Self-Assessment Report (RAV). Data regarding the students’ performance refer to the results of the INVALSI tests. The analyses show that the students get better results in schools where the school libraries are well-functioning and well-resourced, in particular the differences are higher in schools with low and medium-low ESCS. These results are found in both school cycles for the two disciplines investigated: Italian and Math.

School library, Students achievement, Standardized test, Escs
Books and Libraries
Paper Presentation in a Themed Session

Rita Marzoli

Head of Library and Documentation centre, Library and Documentation centre, INVALSI, Italy

Head of Library and Documentation Centre at INVALSI (National Institute for the Evaluation of the education and training system). She graduated in German studies from the University of Rome La Sapienza in 1994 (MA). In 1999 she graduated from the Vatican School of Librarianship. She is editorial board coordinator for 'INVALSI per la ricerca', a double blind peer reviewd series published by Franco Angeli. Her research interests are: user studies, bibliometrics, information literacy, research evaluation.

Ornella Papa

Research Librarian, INVALSI, Italy