Queen’s Joanna Briggs Collaboration Conference of the Americas – Librarian’s Day

October 13, 2016 at 8:39 am | Posted in Professional Development | Leave a comment

battenBelow is the second blog post by Janene Batten, Nursing Librarian at Yale’s Cushing/Whitney Medical Library.  Thank you Janene for sharing your experiences at the Conference of the Americas.


Like many librarians across the country, the librarians in the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library have been developing a systematic review service to try to keep pace with user requests for help with conducting this type of research. Ever curious about how others are doing the same, I noticed a day dedicated especially for librarians, and the topic for discussion was systematic reviews. It was part of the “Conference of the Americas”, sponsored by Queen’s Joanna Briggs Collaboration (QJBC), being held in Kingston, Ontario.

Given the focus of the day, surprisingly only about 16 librarians came, and just two of us were from outside Canada. Maybe this shouldn’t be unexpected as it was the first time that the JBC Conference of the Americas held a day for librarians. As your delegate to this inaugural event, I’d like to share with you the presentation by Lisa Demczuk, from the University of Manitoba, entitled Players on a Team: Building Systematic Review Capacity with Librarian Involvement.

The research faculty and the librarian in the College of Nursing at the University of Manitoba undertook the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI) 5-day training in view of building capacity to undertake rigorous systematic reviews. Since the training two years ago there has been a steep learning curve for all, and although lots of reviews were planned to be started, the faculty researchers limited experience in methodology, the steep learning curve, as well as competing demands meant that some reviews were seen through to completion, but on others there is a loss of momentum and halting of the process.

At the outset the librarian, although an expert searcher, was also a learner with this methodology. However she seized the opportunity to add new dimensions to her liaison role.  She described them as this

  • Expert searcher
    • although proficient, she enhanced her search strategy skills through workshops and working with peers and experts
    • became a peer reviewer of other’s searches
    • trained on specific techniques for data management for systematic reviews
  • Trainer
    • teaching advanced search strategies and specific database techniques
    • advising the steps in a systematic review to those wanting to undertake one
    • helping those doing a systematic review to stay organized
  • Coach/Troubleshooter
    • one-on-one consultations to get a review up and running, or not to get one
    • side by side searching as part of a systematic review
    • checking and reviewing the work of others
  • Resource builder
  • Writer/Reviewer
    • search strategy for the protocol
    • search strategy for the report manuscript
    • review draft of the manuscript
    • respond to comments from the editor
  • Collaborator
    • Seconded for one day per week to work on systematic reviews
    • Developed training sessions and taught with others

Lessons learned through this process:

  • define your roles and responsibilities early
  • when working with teams, in order to move forward, someone has to be in charge
  • the question and the protocol are fundamental to the smooth success of a systematic review
  • details matter – think of it like project management
  • set timelines, and stick to them
  • there will always be failures
  • share with others so that processes can be refined

As we think about whether or not we, and our library, have the capacity to take part in systematic reviews, perhaps this list can be viewed as what possible interactions we can have with the process. Perhaps there are bits where we can become actively involved, and there are parts that we don’t have time to do.  I for one found that Lisa Demczuk’s reflection of her own role to be valuable as it identifies how we can insert ourselves, and to justify the value that the librarian can bring to the process.

Other abstracts of presentations for this day can be found at http://www.queensu.ca/qjbc/qjbc-conference-americas/library-day-agenda

More about the Joanna Briggs Collaboration including the Centers in the Americas and around the world, can be found at http://joannabriggs.org/jbc.html



Queen’s Joanna Briggs Collaboration Conference of the Americas

October 11, 2016 at 12:47 pm | Posted in Professional Development | Leave a comment

batten   Janene Batten, Nursing Librarian at the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library, Yale University received NAHSL funding to attend the Queens Joanna Briggs Collaboration-Librarian Day in Canada.  http://www.queensu.ca/qjbc/qjbc-conference-americas/library-day-agenda

Below is first of two blog posts submitted by Janene.


Queen’s Joanna Briggs Collaboration Conference of the Americas – Keynote Speaker

With help from NAHSL professional development funds I was fortunate enough to attend the “Conference of the Americas”, sponsored by Queen’s Joanna Briggs Collaboration (QJBC), being held in Kingston, Ontario. The reason for my going was to attend the Librarian’s Day (see other post) which was great in and unto itself.  However, the day started with a keynote titled Tweet, Snapchat and Text, Oh My! Role of Social Media in KT [knowledge transfer] given by Dr. Lisa Hopp, Interim Dean and Professor, College of Nursing and Co-Director, Indiana Center for Evidence Based Nursing Practice at Purdue University.

Dr. Hopp spoke about the rise of healthcare messages coming through the social media landscape – nothing new to us. She showed this video from Akron Children’s Hospital, The Healthcare Social Media Evolution https://www.akronchildrens.org/cms/healthcare_social_media_evolution/index.html , which shows that “a growing number of families are using social media as their primary source for health and wellness”. She also mentioned the success that Cleveland Clinic is having with Twitter https://twitter.com/CleClinicMDdue due to the immediacy of Twitter as a vehicle and that most everyone has a mobile device to access it.

Although Dr. Hopp’s message is very familiar to us, I was intrigued by her message to use social media, and do it well by making the message “sticky”. She referenced a book by the Health brothers called Made to Stick: Why some ideas survive and others die http://heathbrothers.com/books/made-to-stick/. It was the first time I had heard of the book, it and naturally I was so intrigued I rushed to Amazon and bought my own copy.

The book describes a way to communicate ideas using the S.U.C.C.E.S.s framework – how to get people’s attention and more to the point, how to keep it. To achieve this, messages must be:

  • Simple – find the core, keep it compact. What is the one thing that you want people to remember? What is the one thing that you want people to do? Make the message the essence of what it is you have to say, perfection being when it is culled to the point that there is nothing left to take away.
  • Unexpected – surprise gets our attention (example from the book is a flight attendant’s safety announcement with a twist https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sPfya60FYo4), and interest keeps it. “Curiosity happens when we feel a gap in our knowledge” (p.84). To do this well, pose a question or puzzle that shows that there is a gap in knowledge creating curiosity and the desire to fill the gap.
  • Concrete – something that is memorable, and usually in the form of an image or a visual image. Remember Florence Nightingale’s pictorial representations of number and causes of soldier deaths in the Crimea War 1885-1856 https://www.sciencenews.org/pictures/mathtrek/112608/nightingale.swf?
  • Credible – once you have people’s attention, now they have to believe it. It has to be evidence of a magnitude that people can relate to.
  • Emotional – make people care. An example from the book is The Truth – Body Bags TV Ad (2006) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4xmFcrJexk where a group of teenagers jump out of a truck and unload body bags in front of a building – each bag represents one of the 1,200 people killed by tobacco every year. Another more recent example is the teen whose honest conversation with his uncle about ASD went viral on FaceBook http://www.littlethings.com/teen-with-autism-video/.
  • Stories – stories are effective teaching tools, and illustrate causal relationships not before recognized and highlight unexpected, resourceful ways in which people solve problems (pp.205-6). An exemple from Hopp’s talk is the TEDxMaastrict recording Meet e-Patient Dave https://www.ted.com/talks/dave_debronkart_meet_e_patient_dave?language=en where Dave deB learns he has a “rare and terminal cancer and turns to fellow patients online – and found the medical treatment that saved his life”.

Reference: Heath, C. & Heath, D. (2008). Made to stick: Why some ideas survive and others die. Random House, New York, NY.


New Library Leaders

September 19, 2016 at 9:11 am | Posted in Advocacy and Gov't Relations | Leave a comment

Dr. Patricia Brennan was sworn in as the new Director of the National Library of Medicine (NLM) on September 12, 2016. She is the first woman and the first nurse to serve in that role. In this video, she describes her vision for the NLM and her goal of developing a next strategic plan for the organization. You can also see her swearing in ceremony.

Speaking of new library leaders, Dr. Carla Hayden was sworn in as the new Librarian of Congress. Hayden is the 14th person to hold the office and the first African-American to be appointed. You can see her swearing in ceremony in this video from the Library of Congress.

[Submitted by Gary Atwood, Chair, NAHSL Govt. Relations Comm.]

Call for Nominations for the 2018 Janet Doe Lectureship

August 3, 2016 at 12:00 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Janet Doe Lectureship is a unique award, offering both significant recognition and the opportunity to present a major plenary session lecture at the annual meeting of the Medical Library Association.  “The Janet Doe Lecturer is an individual chosen annually by the Medical Library Association for his or her unique perspective on the history or philosophy of medical librarianship.”

Nominations are due to the MLA Headquarters November 1, 2016.  Nominations should be submitted by members of the association.  Self-nominations are accepted. 

For more information, please contact the Jury Chair, Virginia Carden – virginia.carden@duke.edu

Janet Doe Lectureship Jury:

   Virginia (Ginger) Carden – Duke University, Chair

   Anna Crawford – West Virginia University

   Elizabeth G. Hinton – University of Mississippi Medical Center

   Amy Suiter

   Laura Seigen – Oregon Health & Science University

   Maria Lopez – MLA


“I’ve found my people!”

July 8, 2016 at 11:16 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Our last MLA blog post is written by Kate Nyhan, a new NAHSL member and a first time MLA attendee.  Congratulations, Kate!

“I’ve found my people!”

“I’ve found my people!” That’s what I told everyone who asked how my first MLA was going. Participating in the conference was a great experience for an early-career medical librarian like me, and I can’t thank NAHSL enough for helping me attend. I met librarians from my city and the other side of the world, and everyone was generous with information, introductions, and advice. I’m so glad to be part of this profession!

That feeling of having found my people was especially valuable because medical librarianship is my second career. I come from a world, teaching, which values sharing and collaboration, but I was impressed to see just how welcoming my experienced library colleagues could be. To everyone who stood still long enough for me to engage you in conversation – especially Jennifer Lyon, Matt Wilcox, and Ginny Pannabecker – thank you for the thoughtful advice.

I found so many of the conference presentations useful, inspiring, or both. I’ve arranged some of my favorites here.

Talk: Student awareness of the big picture: teaching and promoting skills for identifying funding opportunities

Presenters: Judy Smith and Kate Saylor, Taubman Health Sciences Library

Key points: Judy and Kate discussed their excellent funding consultation service for public health students planning internships, including a survey, a workshop, a guide, and tailored “on the road” office hours. What a great way to raise the library’s profile with students and faculty advisers, help students achieve their goals, and stay up to date about students’ career plans (and the information literacy competencies they will need).

Quote from my notes: “When I bring home this I’ll be golden!” — and indeed the career office staff of the Yale School of Public Health are excited about working together to build a similar program.

Talk: National Library of Medicine Update

Presenters: Stacey Arnesen and company

Key points: The whole presentation was great. If you watch only one recording, make it this one. Intellectually one of the highlights was the use of vocabulary density in the indexing process, but what blew me away as a practical resource was Disaster Lit, combined with the Emerging Infectious Disease Information pages. Look here for grey literature on public health emergencies – not just the disaster after it has already happened, but also imminent public health threats. The info on their page can be syndicated on yours, with updates and your own curated local additions. Since coming back from MLA I’ve used this often for public health grey lit; it’s worth opening a new tab for sure.

Quote from my notes: “How come the NLM is so far ahead of the Library of Congress?” To be clear, no one speaking for the former criticized the latter during this presentation. But one organization has been giving us cutting-edge bioinformatics tools since the days of acoustic couplers, and the other was stuck in a revolving door of interim chief information officers between 2012 and 2015. I know which one I want to work with. As I said, I’ve found my people!

Talk: If you share it, will they come? Barriers to reuse of shared biomedical research data

Presenters: Lisa Federer

Key points: Noting that there’s an abundance of research data (of different types and varying quality, and stored in different places), Lisa investigated whether researchers can reuse shared data – and equally important, whether they even want to. She found the benefits you might expect: large Ns (and thus increased statistical power), “radical reuse,” productivity, and efficiency. The researchers she studied also reported challenges, including the computational learning curve, proliferating standards (or perhaps, lack of consensus on standards), and low-quality data. Lisa’s presentations were all excellent, using humor and images to convey valuable information, and I’ll make a point of emulating her effective communication style. But even better than her style was this content; real opinions from practicing researchers. I’m always happy to talk data sharing policies and big picture goals for open science, but it’s important to leaven the policy discussion with a reality check now and then.

Quote from my notes: “I MUST show that slide in my next research data management workshop!”

Talk: Embedding librarian expertise across a public health curriculum

Presenter: Abe Wheeler

Key points: The best talk of the conference on embedded library instruction, if you ask me — and not only because of Abe’s public health focus. This is a playbook that you can follow to develop an instruction program integrated into the curriculum. Starting with the competencies that public health workers need to develop, and working in tandem with faculty, Abe identified places in the curriculum where library expertise could play a role. They built outward from core courses to achieve formal, longitudinal embedding of information literacy instruction. So how can we all achieve this glorious integration between the library and the curriculum?

    • Take heart: “You are helping students get where the faculty want them to be anyway!”
    • Identify gaps so that you can fix them. Talk to faculty and administrators to develop a strategic picture.
    • Articulate relevant aspects of information literacy in rubrics, for easier grading by faculty and better understanding of goals by students.
    • Tailor materials to specific courses and specific modules. You’ll invest time at the front end, but it pays off.
    • Start small, then build up and out.
    • I’m writing the last blog post from the NAHSL members who were lucky enough to receive support to participate in MLA. If you’ve read this far, you can see that I learned a great deal, met some great people, and had a great time. I encourage everyone to attend MLA, and if you can do it with support from NAHSL next year, even better! But in the meantime, if you were there and especially if you were not, I’d love to talk to you — by email, on the phone, or in person at this year’s NAHSL meeting in New Haven. The generous support from this organization allowed me to attend MLA, and I’m grateful for it. I’m excited to get to know more NAHSL members, and to give other librarians the chance that you all gave me this year. Thank you!
    • Quote from my notes: “A new metric from faculty: ‘The crap factor of what they have to read is way down.'” If that’s not a pithy description of the goal of evidence-based medicine and information literacy, I don’t know what is.

Lisa Federer slide for NAHSL blog

Submitted by:

Kate Nyhan, MLS

Research and Education Librarian-Public Health

Cushing/Whitney Medical Library, Yale University


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