Instructors' preparation for LIBR534

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Panizzi reading room at the British Library

Contents

Introduction

This is the fifth time I have taught LIBR 534: Health Information Sources and Services and the third time Greg has taught it. We have done a complete overhaul of the course for fall 2008 and moved it to a problem-based model using technologies and constructivism. Keep in mind that LIBR534 will be offered again in 2014.

Course Blackboard/Vista

Vista will only be accessible to MLIS students enrolled in LIBR534. It provides a mostly private space and obvious counterpoint to the open discussions/sharing on Twitter - which, of course, are mostly public. Also open and public is our LIBR534 delicious account.

Syllabus - LIBR534, Fall 2008

See http://www.slais.ubc.ca/COURSES/syllabi/08-09-wt1/l534.htm

Assignments

Working groups

Why working groups? To learn together in class and, then, to write a paper together for the final paper and peer review assignments. Let us know if you wish further clarification of this idea.

Sept 2 - Class 1 (Locating yourself)

Topic: "Finding your way in health librarianship" (pdf copy) - Greg leads class

A theme across the course is the idea of location - locating yourself, the idea of where health librarians practice in the digital age, finding a way to be a part of the clinical process, situating ourselves in the academic research of our organizations, etc. The idea of location is also linked to our visibility in our profession and within our organizations, our print libraries and the tensions/challenges of marketing ourselves when bricks-and-mortar libraries are not viewed with the same importance as the web, health library consortia and digital access in general.

  • Objectives:
    • To meet & engage with fellow students, instructors, share stories, backgrounds & experiences
    • To discuss course format, content, delivery and assessment (assignments)
    • To discuss expectations around communication and class participation
    • To locate yourselves vis a vis health sciences librarianship
      • Students place themselves relative to each other (background - culture, education, interests)
      • Discuss personal experiences as consumers or patients in Canada's (or American) health system;
      • Share other experiences related to health (providing service as a librarian, GAA or even as a librarian in health area);
    • To share observations about the importance of health information in society;
  • Questions to consider:
    • why are you/we here?
    • why are you taking this course? what are we going to do here?
    • what kind of education is needed for a career in health librarianship?
    • who are health librarians? what motivates us/them? what do we do differently? what role(s) are changing?
    • what makes us health librarians? what is it we do as librarians that is indispensible?
    • where do we typically practice? how is that changing? ie. location, clientele, 5Ws (who, what, where, when why/how)
    • how important is domain knowledge or subject expertise in this branch of librarianship?
  • By the time you leave this class you will have:
    • met the instructors and your colleagues
    • reviewed course outline, goals and objectives of course; discussed overall arc of LIBR534
    • reviewed the content of LIBR534, instructors' teaching style(s) and expectations in and out of class
    • created a concept map of your context in class, classmates, your experiences in health, librarianship and/or health librarianship
    • heard about the leaders system and seen how it works in class
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Next class - reading activities for September 3rd-9th

To prepare for next class, read the entries below and use Blackboard to share your opinions about the information and ideas therein. Raise questions with classmates or instructors if something is unclear. Point to other articles if you wish using our delicious account.

  • Wiki entries (background):

Please read these brief entries and prepare to discuss each topic in a small group during next class.

  • A key article for class discussion at next class:

Please be prepared to discuss this article in some detail during next class.

Sept 9 - Class 2 (Basic search in biomedicine)

Topic: "Basic search techniques & interfaces in health" (pdf copy) - Dean leads class

One of the most important skills that health librarians bring to the practice of health care is cumulating the literature for end-users. Health librarians also teach users how to find the best health information - known as the best evidence. The initial challenge, however, in acquiring proficient search skills is learning about the structure of the databases, their various interfaces and using controlled terms and keywords to optimize precision and recall. This is the goal of class II.

  • Objectives:
    • To introduce PubMed, Medline, EMBASE, and CINAHL as a means to locate journal articles for health professionals
    • To introduce controlled vocabularies (MeSH, EMTREE terms, CINAHL Headings) as a means to cumulate health information
    • To discuss search engines such as Google scholar in locating health information
  • By the time you leave this class you will have:
    • Learned some of the basics of biomedical searching/search techniques/interfaces
    • Framed information needs as clinical questions such as:
      • "Is vitamin C effective in treating and/or preventing the common cold"? & "Does aspirin reduce heart attack risk?"
    • Questioned the importance of high-quality information, best evidence and the journal article in medicine/health
  • Questions to consider:
    • Why is searching for articles in medicine so important?
    • What are the major biomedical searching tools, their coverage and features/interfaces?
    • Are the biomedical databases indexed/constructed similarly? why or why not?
    • Is the open web important in biomedical searching? why or why not?
  • Exercises:
    • Discuss top three (3) things you learned in this week's readings/Coletti article
    • What questions do you want to raise with your peers/the instructors?
    • List five (5) top things you would want to teach end-users about searching MEDLINE
    • Discuss why the journal literature is critical to the practice of medicine
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Next class - readings/activities for September 10-16th:

To prepare for next class, read the entries below and use Blackboard to share your opinions about the information and ideas therein. Raise questions with classmates or instructors if something is unclear. Point to other articles if you wish using our delicious account.

  • Wiki entries (background):

Please read these brief entries and prepare to discuss each topic in a small group during next class.

  • Articles for class discussion at next class:

Please be prepared to discuss these articles during next class.

Sept 16 - Class 3 (Uncovering 'best evidence')

Topic: "Search for best evidence: point-of-care decision-making tools" (pdf copy) - Greg leads class

To facilitate the process of getting best evidence into practice, various vendors have created point-of-care (POC) tools to assist health professionals. Simply put, POC tools distill or condense the medical literature into compact, readable formats for easy reading and processing. As tools to help in clinical decision-making, POC tools bring some challenges and issues for health librarians who use them.

  • By the time you leave this class you will have:
    • questioned the importance of these point-of-care tools vis a vis primary research
    • discussed pros/cons of point of care decision-making tools to find the evidence
    • listed some of the major tools in this area and how they might be evaluated
  • Questions to consider:
    • Which of the point-of-care tools seem to be the easiest to navigate? Why?
    • What are the major benefits of evidence summaries in these tools?
    • Comment on the ease of use, efficiency and informative nature of these resources
    • Which tools are the best organized? and present information in usable ways for physicians?
  • Exercises:
    • Discuss the strengths/weaknesses of search tools, interfaces, etc./questions you want to raise with instructors
    • Answer two clinical questions using these POC tools
    • Report to larger group about POC tools and how they compare with other tools we have seen
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Next class - readings/activities for September 17th-23rd

To prepare for next class, read the entries below and use Blackboard to share your opinions about the information and ideas therein. Raise questions with classmates or instructors if something is unclear. Point to other articles if you wish using our delicious account.

  • Wiki entries (background):

Please read these brief entries and prepare to discuss each topic in a small group during next class.

Sept 23 - Class 4 (Expert searching in evidence-based practice)

Topic: "Beyond the basics: expert searching in clinical practice" (pdf copy) - Dean leads class

A major role for health librarians is the expert search role in evidence-based practice. This means possessing an understanding of cumulating evidence and its challenges based on study designs (randomized clinical trials, systematic reviews and literature reviews in general). Expert search skills are balanced against an understanding of the limitations of access within organizations (i.e. hospital firewalls, minimal search skills of users or no library) and the challenge of building information literacy skills for our end-users given demands on their time.

  • Objectives:
    • To introduce the concept of expert searching – including filters, hedges, command-level searching in the biomedical databases
    • To discuss health librarians' roles in five steps of EBM and grants, complex research design
    • To identify aspects of a well-planned, documented expert search
    • To overcome challenges in cumulating evidence (i.e. precision/recall, potential for error, Googlization, grey literature)


  • By the time you leave this class you will have:
    • Gained appreciation for evidence-based practice (EBP) and how to cumulate evidence
    • Discussed the expertise health librarians bring to academic and clinical research in biomedicine
    • Explored our roles as search intermediaries, search collaborators/educators/consultants and trainer of end-user searchers
    • Discussed the roles of health librarians in rapid evidence-assessments (REAs), systematic reviews
  • Questions to consider:
    • What is expert searching and when are health librarians called upon to use these skills?
  • Exercises:
    • Define evidence-based medicine or evidence-based practice - what is it, exactly?
    • Discuss the levels of evidence and how to find them in health databases
    • Discuss the many roles of health librarians in this context
    • Clinical question: "Is vitamin C effective in treating and/or preventing the common cold"?
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Next class - readings/activities for September 24th-29th

To prepare for next class, read the entries below and use Blackboard to share your opinions about the information and ideas therein. Raise questions with classmates or instructors if something is unclear. Point to other articles if you wish using our delicious account.

  • Wiki entries (background):

Please read these brief entries and prepare to discuss each topic in a small group during next class.

Sept 30 - Class 5 (Print & digital worlds)

Topic: "Navigating print & the digital in health reference & information services" - Greg leads class

Health librarians provide reference services using print and online sources for a range of end-users - physicians, nurses, pharmacists, clinical faculty, students etc. The main contexts for providing these services are in-person, online (chat, instant messaging, using social media), e-mail and on the phone. Matching sources/tools/databases to clinical questions is the focus of this class.

  • Objectives:
    • To discuss the changes in the provision of reference services in recent years (e.g. the Google effect)
    • To discuss reference services in academic health libraries compared to hospital libraries
    • To compare traditional print sources to their online counterparts – advantages/disadvantages
    • To find and effectively use health information in all formats
  • By the time you leave this class you will have:
    • Reviewed competencies document and skills required in health reference services
      • Considered the utility of subject or domain knowledge in medicine; health databases/sources content, structure, use
    • Discussed the settings reference services are provided in and their differences
    • Been exposed to a range of print and online tools in answering reference questions.
  • Questions to consider:
    • How has the digital world and Google changed the use of the most sacred of reference books, the dictionary?
    • Do we need print reference books anymore? What about other print items? Is everything online?
    • How do health librarians determine the needs of users in terms of print or online?
  • Exercises:
  • Do you have any questions you want to raise with instructors?
    • How did search engines like Google change the playing field in terms of reference questions?
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Next class - readings/activities for October 1st-7th

To prepare for next class, read the entries below and use Blackboard to share your opinions about the information and ideas therein. Raise questions with classmates or instructors if something is unclear. Point to other articles if you wish using our delicious account.

  • Wiki entries (background):

Please read these brief entries and prepare to discuss each topic in a small group during next class.

  • A key article for class discussion at next class:

What are the pros and cons of this article? Are the authors librarians? Does a clear definition emerge of web 2.0?

Oct 7 - Class 6 (How web 2.0 is changing medicine)

Topic: "Web 2.0 in health: unleashing social media and the social web" - Dean leads class

Health librarians are encouraged to follow trends in social media and web 2.0. However, we must find new ways assess these current technologies through better evaluation and contextualization processes - what social software tools are most useful given the reference question? what are the evidence-based information needs of health professionals - can web 2.0 help in this process? Are physicians different from nurses in their use of social software? How?

  • Objectives:
    • To introduce the concepts and range of social software usage in healthcare
    • To introduce faculty using best evidence and web 2.0 technologies
    • To help assess different information channels in health and medicine (See blogs)
    • To understand the concept of digital embeddedness and its connection to providing library services in web 2.0
  • By the time you leave this class you will have:
    • Developed some appreciation of how social software is being used in health and medicine
    • Assessed some of the learning potential of web 2.0 as applied to health care and medicine
    • Discussed the challenges of using social media in medicine (i.e. privacy, confidentiality, digital reputation)
  • Questions to consider:
    • Should health librarians embrace web 2.0 tools? What about immersive worlds? How do we resist over-technicization?
    • Is developing an online identity important for librarians?
    • What's the connection between virtual presence/identities and physical ones?
    • Are future generations of health professionals in a stronger position to learn and collaborate online than previous generations?
    • Does expansion of formal and informal virtual spaces where students and faculty can interact influence how they learn how to practice?
    • Are there new issues of identity fraud/appropriation and privacy online which need to be addressed?
  • Exercises:
    • Discuss article and tease out various aspects of it in groups/list questions you want to raise with instructors
      • What are the various types of web 2.0 tools currently in use in health & medicine?
    • How are they being used by practitioners? by health librarians?
    • What are the benefits/problems/pitfalls of web 2.0 for physicians, health librarians, pharmacists, other health professionals and even patients?
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Next class - readings/activities for October 8th-13th

To prepare for next class, read the entries below and use Blackboard to share your opinions about the information and ideas therein. Raise questions with classmates or instructors if something is unclear. Point to other articles if you wish using our delicious account.

  • Wiki entries (background):

Please read these brief entries and prepare to discuss each topic in a small group during next class.

Oct 14 - Class 7 (Teaching & learning)

Topic: "Health librarians' teaching and learning roles" - Dean leads class

Teaching users how to locate/assess/use information is central to the work of health librarians. This work requires the ability to assume various roles in-person (and online) using various strategies and skills suited to the learning activity at hand. The question is how can we become better able to assume our teaching roles? This class will use an example of an expert teacher session while exploring issues and challenges of teaching in the field.

  • Objectives:
    • To discuss various in-person and digital service points where health librarians provide information services in the digital age
    • To begin questioning what types of higher-order learning can be fostered by health librarians (i.e. discrete vs. lifelong)
    • To learn more about the importance of our roles as teachers (and learners) and grounding our approach in pedagogies
    • To select the most appropriate instructional strategies, health librarians must understand the different approaches to learning.
  • By the time you leave this class you will have:
    • Discussed various methods of teaching users wherever they are located, including online
    • Examined the differences between short talks versus three (3) hour workshops
    • Begun to think about how to teach health professionals using online methods and tools
  • Exercises:
    • List major types of learning theory and an example of each in a teaching context i.e. behavioural = online tutorial
    • What is the best teaching approach for a 15 min. presentation? 3 hour workshop?
    • List some questions you want to raise with instructors about teaching health professionals
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Next class - readings/activities for October 15th-20th

To prepare for next class, read the entries below and use Blackboard to share your opinions about the information and ideas therein. Raise questions with classmates or instructors if something is unclear. Point to other articles if you wish using our delicious account.

  • Wiki entries (background):

Please read these brief entries and prepare to discuss each topic in a small group during next class.

Oct 21 - Class 8 ("Embeddedness")

Topic: "Clinical librarianship & communities of practice"

    • history of clinical librarians, work of Joanne Gard Marshall
    • examples in Canada, U.S. and Australia - as many that we can draw from as possible
    • highlighting role of subject knowledge, expertise, experience
    • determining/understanding needs/interplay of medical teams and clinical librarianship
    • Informationists model
  • Speakers:
    • Vicki Lee, Consumer health and clinical librarian, CIBC Centre for Patients and Families, Vancouver General Hospital (VGH)
    • Brooke Ballantyne Scott, Clinical Librarian, Riverview Hospital and the Forensic Psychiatric Services Commission
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Next class - readings/activities for October 28th

To prepare for next class, read the entries below and use Blackboard to share your opinions about the information and ideas therein. Raise questions with classmates or instructors if something is unclear. Point to other articles if you wish using our delicious account.

  • Wiki entries (background):

Please read these brief entries and prepare to discuss each topic in a small group during next class.

Oct 28 - Class 9 (Collaborations)

Topic: "The case for collaboration in biomedical research"

Health librarians bring their expertise in information management and their expert skills in information retrieval to the biomedical research enterprise. But what does the future hold for health librarians with respect to exploring physical and digital collaboration(s), partnerships and learning in the biomedical sectors? This class will explore some of the many possibilities grouped under the umbrella collaborations.

  • Speakers:
    • Cathy Rayment
    • Greg Rowell
    • Mimi Doyle Waters
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Next class - readings/activities for November 4-10th

To prepare for next class, read the entries below and use Blackboard to share your opinions about the information and ideas therein. Raise questions with classmates or instructors if something is unclear. Point to other articles if you wish using our delicious account.

Nov 4 - Class 10 (Consumer health)

  • Speakers:
    • Megan Wiebe, Clinical Librarian, InspireHealth (confirmed)
    • Beth Morrison, Librarian, BC Cancer Agency
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Next class - readings/activities for November 18th

To prepare for next class, read the entries below and use Blackboard to share your opinions about the information and ideas therein. Raise questions with classmates or instructors if something is unclear. Point to other articles if you wish using our delicious account.

Nov 11 Remembrance day (no class)

Nov 18 - Class 11 (Health librarians - our future)

  • "More than searching: our research responsibilities"
    • Health librarians as academic researchers
    • Part of the research enterprise
    • Part of clinical teams
    • New research roles in expert searching
    • Building an evidence-base of our own research to inform our work as health librarians
    • Beyond our libraries: web 3.0
  • Speakers:
    • Allan Cho
    • Kathy Hornby
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Final class - activities for November 25th

To prepare for next class, it might be useful for your group to be prepared to talk about your paper.

Nov 25 - Class 12 (Final group discussions)

  • Class wrap-up
    • Challenges of health librarianship in 21st century
      • a better, more focused research agenda
      • evidence-based librarianship?
      • vision for health librarians’ role in the knowledge management process
      • a strategy for educating and training the next generation of librarian knowledge managers
    • Mindmaps for course?
    • Evaluations
  • Speakers: Someone inspirational

Constructivist models & pedagogies

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