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Libraries in Medical Education

Lisa Traditi
Health Sciences Library – University of Colorado
Aurora, Colorado
View from the grounds of Asilomar State Beach and Conference Center, Pacific

View from the grounds of Asilomar State Beach and Conference Center, Pacific Grove, CA
Photo by Lisa Traditi

Using the generous funding from the NN/LM MCR, I attended the 2012 WGEA and its sibling groups – all subsets of the American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC), held at the stunning Asilomar State Beach and Conference Center in Pacific Grove, CA. ( Each regional AAMC GEA has its own Libraries in Medical Education (LiME) group. The WGEA LiME group started up in 2008 and meets each year at the beginning of the annual WGEA meeting.  One of four regions, the Western Region encompasses Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, Utah, New Mexico, Nevada, California, Oregon, Washington, Hawaii, and Alaska – see this pdf map for all 4 regions. (


AAMC – American Association of Medical Colleges
CRiME – Computer Resources in Medical Education
LiME – Libraries in Medical Education
WGEA – Western Group on Educational Affairs
WGSA – Western Group on Student Affairs
WOSR – Western Organization of Student Representatives

The LiME Special Interest Group meets for 3-4 hours to share information about how we are involved in supporting teaching and learning in our respective Schools of Medicine, including Physical Therapy and Physician Assistant programs. Because the WGEA includes librarians outside of MCMLA and the NN/LM MCR, I get to network with and learn from colleagues from institutions outside of our region. This meeting alone is so beneficial. We’re an informal group, so we can share our successes and struggles; gathering ideas and suggestions for different approaches to our work. At this year’s meeting, we decided to try to offer webinars so that those who are unable to attend the meetings in person can share in the fun. Our first WGEA LiME Webinar, scheduled on July 30 at 1pm MDT,  will be on the Library’s Role in InterProfessional Education programs. Watch the MCMLA and other lists for more news on how to sign up!

Go here ( to get information on your regional LiME group.

We joined the CRiME* Group after lunch to hear about their work.  Our CRiME colleagues are the technology support and development side of medical education. They discuss how various technologies can help or hinder medical education.  Much of their work is reflected in papers and workshops held during the rest of the WGEA meeting. This year, one of those themes was the “flipped classroom”, where educators develop Kahn Academy style online presentations for students to watch before class, allowing them to come to class and move more quickly into small group learning activities. (For more: and Another interesting session discussed the variety of ways different schools are using tablet devices in their educational programs; many of which involve the library providing access to resources, as well as instruction.

The WGEA meeting as a whole is a terrific opportunity to connect with educators, administrators, and students in your School of Medicine. We learn about trends and issues in medical education and research.  Many LiME members present papers and posters at this meeting. I got a chance to have long conversations with medical educators and technologists in my own school, in an atmosphere where they are open and welcoming to ideas on integrating librarians into the student learning process in their pre-clinical and clinical training.

The goal of the Groups on Educational Affairs is to “promote excellence in the continuum of medical education by fostering the professional development of medical educators and advancing research in medical education.” ( If you are a librarian at a School of Medicine, I urge you to consider attending your regional meeting.  You won’t be sorry.

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