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Archive for the ‘Education & Training’ Category

Apply to Attend the Winter 2014 Online Class “Fundamentals of Bioinformatics and Searching”

Health science librarians in the United States are invited to participate in the next offering of the online bioinformatics training course, Fundamentals of Bioinformatics and Searching, sponsored by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), and the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, NLM Training Center (NTC). This rigorous course provides basic knowledge and skills for librarians interested in helping patrons use online molecular databases and tools from the NCBI. Attending this course will improve your ability to initiate or extend bioinformatics services at your institution. Prior knowledge of molecular biology and genetics is not required. This course is a prerequisite for the face-to-face workshop, Librarian’s Guide to NCBI.

The major goal of this course is to provide an introduction to bioinformatics theory and practice in support of developing and implementing library-based bioinformatics products and services. This material is essential for decision-making and implementation of these programs, particularly instructional and reference services. The course encompasses visualizing bioinformatics end-user practice, places a strong emphasis on hands-on acquisition of NCBI search competencies, and a working molecular biology vocabulary, through self-paced hands-on exercises. This course is offered online (asynchronous) from February 10 – March 21, 2014. The course format includes video lectures, readings, a molecular vocabulary exercise, an NCBI discovery exercise, and other hands-on exercises. The instructor is Diane Rein, Ph.D., MLS, Bioinformatics and Molecular Biology Liaison from the Health Science Library, University at Buffalo.

Due to limited enrollment, interested participants are required to complete an application form. The deadline for completing the application is January 10, 2014; participants will be notified of acceptance on January 22, 2014. The course is offered at no cost to participants. Participants who complete all assignments and the course evaluation by the due dates within the course will receive fifteen hours of MLA CE credit. No partial CE credit is granted. Participants who complete the required coursework and earn full continuing education credit will be eligible to apply to attend the five-day Librarian’s Guide that will be offered in April 2014 if they so choose.

Visit the Fundamentals of Bioinformatics and Searching webpage for more information and to apply. If you have any questions, e-mail the course organizers.

New AHRQ Tool to Assess Patient Education Materials!

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) has just released a new tool to help professionals choose more understandable and actionable materials; the Patient Education Materials Assessment Tool (PEMAT). Patient educational materials, such as brochures, medical instructions, and audiovisual aids, are often complex and lack clear information about what the patient should do. AHRQ’s PEMAT and User’s Guide provides a systematic method to evaluate and compare the understandability and actionability of patient education materials. By selecting health materials that score better on the PEMAT, you can be more confident that people of varying levels of health literacy will be able to process and explain key messages, and identify what they can do based on the information presented.

Additional tools for improving health literacy are available from AHRQ’s website, including:

New NLM Traveling Exhibition “From DNA to Beer: Harnessing Nature in Medicine and Industry”

The Era of Antibiotics, painted by Robert A. Thom for Parke, Davis & Company, 1950s. Printed with Permission of American Pharmacists Association Foundation. Copyright 2009 APhA Foundation.NLM’s Exhibition Program has announced a new traveling banner exhibit, From DNA to Beer: Harnessing Nature in Medicine and Industry, now available for booking! A link to the online exhibition is also available. From DNA to Beer: Harnessing Nature in Medicine and Industry explores some of the processes, problems, and potential inherent in technologies that use microorganisms for health and commercial purposes. Over the past two centuries, scientists, in partnership with industry, have developed techniques using and modifying life forms like yeast, molds, and bacteria, to create a host of new therapies and produce better foods and beverages. The exhibition illustrates the history of this dynamic relationship among microbes, medicine, technology, and industry, which has spanned centuries.

For questions about the traveling exhibit, contact nlmtravelingexhibits@mail.nlm.nih.gov. For information on currently available and future NLM traveling exhibits, please visit the Exhibition Program website.

New England Collaborative Data Management Curriculum Website Now Available!

The New England Collaborative Data Management Curriculum (NECDMC) offers openly available materials that librarians can use to teach research data management (RDM) best practices to students in the sciences, health sciences, and engineering fields, at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The materials in the curriculum are openly available, with lecture notes and slide presentations that librarians teaching RDM can customize for their particular audiences. The curriculum also has a database of real life research cases that can be integrated into the curriculum to address discipline specific data management topics. The project has been led by the Lamar Soutter Library at the University of Massachusetts Medical School with funding from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, New England Region.

The Lamar Soutter Library developed the Frameworks for a Data Management Curriculum with Worcester Polytechnic Institute in 2011. Over the past year the Soutter Library has partnered with librarians from Tufts University, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Northeastern University, and the Marine Biological Laboratory and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, to fully develop the curriculum’s lecture content, readings, activities, and slide presentations.

Some libraries will be piloting the curriculum at their institutions and conducting evaluations with students of the learning modules. If you are teaching or plan to teach RDM, you are invited to pilot the NECDMC. For more information about being a pilot partner, please contact Donna Kafel.

Boots on the Ground: ACA Outreach and Enrollment Efforts in California!

NN/LM PSR Consumer Health & Technology Coordinator Kelli Ham attended an event hosted by the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN) on October 15, 2013, for stakeholders involved with the Affordable Care Act. The four-hour session was titled A New Era of Coverage: Maximizing Participation in the ACA and was held at the California Endowment in Los Angeles. Attendees included county agencies, certified enrollment counselors, outreach and education grantee organizations, health plans, and insurance companies.

The session was well worth attending! I was able to hear first-hand about ‘boots on the ground’ efforts to educate California residents about the new health insurance law and to help them sign up for accounts, learn about their options, and enroll in a health insurance plan. In addition, we all participated in a group activity in the afternoon which was a very productive exercise; groups responded to questions and brainstormed ideas for outreach to “hard-to-reach” communities, such as immigrants, limited-English proficient, homeless/re-entry populations, and low wage/part-time workers. Groups discussed the barriers and strategies for reaching the population and enrolling them in health coverage. Potential partner organizations and agencies were also identified.

The results of this activity were enlightening; while each group suggested standard approaches, many ideas were proposed that would work well for outreach from the NN/LM standpoint. For instance, our group chose ‘Young Immigrants’ as our target population. Some of the barriers identified for this group were the distrust of government agencies, immigration status and fear of deportation, lack of perceived need for health insurance (young invincibles), and language difficulties. Strategies for reaching this population included the use of social media, mobile apps, tables at street fairs, outreach at clubs, ads on public transportation (bus, Metro), adult schools, and ESL classes. Word of mouth is also powerful, so recruiting young people from this group is another strategy. Possible partnering organizations would be non-profits that deal with undocumented young people who came to the U.S. as children, other legal organizations, local clinics, and Planned Parenthood, to name a few.

Since the Covered California website had only been up and running for a few weeks, few statistics were available. According to one of the presenters, the website had over 987,000 unique visits during the first week. Combining telephone contacts and the web site, there were over 43,000 applications and over 16,000 household applications were completed. More statistics will be released in the near future.

Anyone who is interested in attending local workshops or presentations can see announcements on the Covered California Twitter feed, @coveredca, or view news and upcoming events at the Covered California News Center page. Libraries might be interested in hosting a program with outreach and education counselors; the best way to find local grantee organizations is to download the updated PDF file Outreach and Education Grant Program Award Recipients, dated August 20, 2013. Also, library patrons might be interested in applying by phone rather than the website. According to Covered California, it takes less than an hour to enroll in a Covered California health plan by phone. Service centers are open weekdays 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. and Saturdays 8 a.m. – 6 p.m, available at 800-300-1506.

Registration Now Open for “Teaching Research Data Management with the New England Collaborative Data Management Curriculum”

Registration is now available for the full-day workshop, Teaching Research Data Management with the New England Collaborative Data Management Curriculum, that will be held on Friday, November 8, at the Beechwood Hotel, 367 Plantation St., Worcester, MA. This is a “train the trainer” class, intended for librarians who will be teaching best practices in research data management to science, health science, and/or engineering students and faculty. During the workshop, Elaine Martin, Andrew Creamer, and Donna Kafel will be demonstrating the components of the New England Collaborative Data Management Curriculum and discussing ways that the curriculum materials can be used and customized.

Registrants for the workshop must attend a prerequisite webinar, Best Practices for Teaching Research Data Management and Consulting on Data Management Plans in New England, that will be held on Thursday, October 31, from 9-10 AM PDT. The webinar will be archived so that anyone unable to attend the live session may view it prior to the November 8 class. The number of attendees for the in-person workshop will be limited to 40. Registration for the workshop is on a first-come, first-serve basis. The fee for the workshop is $35 (no refunds will be issued). The webinar is free, but registration is required to attend the live session on 10/31.

IMLS Announces 2013 LSTA Competitive Grant Recipients for the Pacific Territories, Freely Associated States, and Hawaii!

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) has just announced seven 2013 Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) Competitive Grants, totaling $487,158, for the Pacific Territories, Freely Associated States, and Hawaii. IMLS provides support for Pacific Territories, Freely Associated States, and U.S. Virgin Islands through a competitive process administered by Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning (McREL). This year’s grants were awarded to the following institutions. To see award details, visit the list of funded projects on the IMLS web site.

  • Feleti Barstow Public Library – Pago Pago, American Samoa
  • Joeten-Kiyu Public Library – Saipan, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands
  • FSM National Archives, Culture and Historic Preservation – Palikir, Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia
  • Guam Public Library System – Hagatna, Guam
  • Palau Ministry of Education – Koror, Palau
  • Alele Museum, Public Library & National Archives – Majuro, Republic of the Marshall Islands

An additional award was made through the IMLS National Leadership Grant program to Pacific Resources for Education and Learning in Honolulu, HI. The $249,558 grant will support a project-based curriculum that uses the topics of nutrition and cultivation to increase childhood literacy. “The Pacific Territories and Freely Associated States face unique challenges in terms of connectivity, language, and outreach,” said IMLS Director Susan Hildreth. “While these projects are designed to address local needs, they also offer models of library service for other island nations.”

Congratulations to all the awardees!

ACRL Announces New Publication in the Active Guides Series!

ACRL has announced the publication of Designing Training, by Melanie Hawks, the fifth entry in the ACRL Active Guides series. It is available for purchase in print through the ALA Online Store and Amazon.com; and by telephone order at (866) 746-7252. Focusing on the needs of the adult learner, Designing Training will help librarians and library staff plan training sessions for takeaway value, learner engagement, and learning transfer. Hawks provides examples and exercises that demonstrate how to design highly effective learning events from the ground up. The practical activities provided throughout this title will lead the reader through the process of developing well-designed training that sets up both the trainer and the learners to succeed. Designing Training is a practical guide that will serve as an essential go-to resource for those responsible for training as either an on-going job assignment or an occasional project.

The ACRL Active Guides series address professional and workplace issues. Additional titles in the series include Life-Work Balance, Influencing without Authority, Conversations that Work: Conducting Performance Assessments, and Pay it Forward: Mentoring New Information Professionals.

NLM Recruiting for 2014-2015 Associate Fellowship Program!

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) is accepting applications for its Associate Fellowship program, a one-year training program for recent MLS graduates and librarians early in their career. The application deadline is February 4, 2014. Between 4 and 7 fellows will be selected for the program.

The Fellowship: Curriculum and Projects
In the first half of the year, a formal curriculum offers exposure to library operations, research and development, intramural and extramural research, development and lifecycle of NLM’s web-based products and services, and the extensive outreach and education program reaching consumers, special populations, health professionals and librarians. In the second half of the year, Associate Fellows have the opportunity to choose projects based on real-world problems proposed by library divisions and work with librarians and library staff over a six-seven month period. Successful projects have led to peer-reviewed publications and to services that have become a regular part of library operations.

The September through August program also offers professional development and an introduction to the wider world of health sciences librarianship that may include:

  • Supported attendance at national professional conferences, often including the Medical Library Association’s annual meeting, the American Medical Informatics Association annual meeting and others
  • Additional brown bags, seminars, field trips, attendance at a Pow-Wow, and learning opportunities available on the National Institutes of Health campus
  • Opportunities to meet and interact with senior management at the National Library of Medicine
  • Experienced preceptors from National Library of Medicine staff
  • Potential to compete for a second-year fellowship at a health sciences library in the United States

The Fellowship Offers:

  • A stipend equivalent to a U.S. Civil Service salary at the GS-9 level ($51,630 in 2013)
  • Additional financial support for the purchase of health insurance
  • Some relocation funding

Who is Eligible?
All U.S. and Canadian citizens who will have earned a MLS or equivalent degree in library/information science from an ALA-accredited school by August 2014. Both recent graduates and librarians early in their career are welcome to apply. Priority is given to U.S. citizens. Applications and additional information are available online. Feel free to contact Kathel Dunn, Associate Fellowship Program Coordinator at 301-435-4083 for additional questions about the program.

NLM launches “Surviving and Thriving: AIDS, Politics, and Culture – Traveling Banner Display and Online Exhibition”

Robert C. Gallo, MD, at the National Institutes of Health, early 1980sThe National Library of Medicine has launched a traveling banner exhibition and online adaptation of Surviving and Thriving: AIDS, Politics, and Culture, an exploration of the rise of AIDS in the early 1980′s and the evolving response to the epidemic over the last 30 years. In 1981, a new disease appeared in the United States. Reactions to the disease, soon named AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome), varied. The exhibition illustrates an iconic history of AIDS alongside lesser-known examples of historical figures who changed the course of the pandemic. Utilizing a variety of historic photographs, pamphlets, and publications, Surviving and Thriving is divided into five historical investigations, each of which highlights how different groups responded to AIDS. Early responders cared for the sick, fought homophobia, and promoted new practices to keep people healthy. Scientists and public health officials struggled to understand the disease and how it spread. Politicians remained largely silent until the epidemic became too big to ignore. Activists demanded that people with AIDS be part of the solution. Early stops for the traveling banner exhibition include the University of California, San Francisco, CA, during November 25, 2013, to January 4, 2014.

The title Surviving and Thriving comes from a book written in 1987 by and for people with AIDS that insisted people could live with AIDS, not just die from it. Jennifer Brier, PhD (University of Illinois at Chicago), the exhibition’s curator, explains that, “centering the experience of people with AIDS in the exhibition allows us to see how critical they were, and continue to be, in the political and medical fight against human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/AIDS.” This exhibition presents their stories alongside those of others involved in the national AIDS crisis. The companion website includes an extensive selection of NLM’s diverse poster collection about HIV/AIDS. This “Digital Gallery” displays 238 posters grouped into fifteen thematic clusters, providing viewers new historical avenues to explore beyond the exhibition. Brier sees these as invaluable resources for multiple audiences: “not only will these visual materials be incredibly useful for teachers interested in engaging students in historical thinking about HIV/AIDS, but they will also allow the general public to learn more about how public health efforts relied on graphic design and imagery to effect behavior change.” The website is augmented by education resources that investigate the exhibition content, including two lesson plans for grades 10-12; three six-class higher education modules; and two online activities. In addition, a selection of published landmark HIV/AIDS articles are provided by NLM’s PubMed Central, which freely provides access to over 2.8 million life science journal articles, and modern day information is provided by AIDSInfo/InfoSIDA.

For more information about booking the Surviving and Thriving: AIDS, Politics, and Culture exhibit for your library, visit the traveling banner exhibition web site!