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Archive for January, 2014

Evaluation Terminology: An Overview and Free Resources

Friday, January 31st, 2014

Last week OERC employees attended an excellent webinar session presented by Kylie Hutchinson of Community Solutions Planning & Evaluation about the vast and often jargony world of evaluation terminology. As part of Hutchison’s research she consulted three online evaluation glossaries* and counted thirty six different definitions of evaluation methods within them. What accounts for so much variation? Common reasons include the perspectives and language used by different sectors and funders such as education, government, and non-profit organizations.

A helpful tip when working with organizations on evaluation projects is to ask to see copies of documents such as annual reports, mission and vision statements, strategic planning, and promotional materials to learn more about what language they use to communicate about themselves. This will assist you in knowing if modifications in assessment terminology language are needed, and can help guide you with discussions on clarifying the organization’s purpose of the evaluation.

Hutchinson identified several common themes within the plethora of evaluation methods and created color-coded clusters of them within her Evaluation Terminology Map, which uses the online mind mapping program. She also created a freely available Evaluation Glossary app for use on both iPhone and Android mobile devices and has a web-based version under development. For additional resources to better understand health information outreach evaluation, be sure to visit our tools website at

* Two of the three online evaluation glossaries referenced are still available online

Thoughts on Hospital Library Closures

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

A message from the NN/LM NER Director, Elaine Martin DA

Some of you may have been hearing about the threaded discussion on MedLib-L about library closures. There was some mention of the work done by NN/LM NER regarding hospital library advocacy. There have been other comments about the RMLs, NLM, and MLA doing  something.
In case you didn’t see it, this is what I wrote and posted to the list on 1/29/14:

I have been reading with interest the various comments and concerns regarding the many recent hospital library closures. As director of the New England Region, I want to acknowledge the tireless efforts that many of our local librarians have played in developing advocacy programs and tool kits, and attending on site meetings with administrators to try to stem the tide in our region. Many also worked with me on a study of the perception of the hospital library by interviewing their administrators and educating them on the tangible benefits of having a hospital library. These efforts as reported met with mixed results. Even some of the participants were eventually let go. The New England Hospital Library Advocacy group now is refocusing its efforts at trying to identify new models of hospital librarianship; knowledge management being one but there may be others.

I think the efforts in New England show that we as a profession whether hospital or academic we are in real trouble. Even our academic medical library colleagues are losing staff, space and collections. While it is true that hospitals are needing to respond to the new funding model of not being reimbursed for every procedure and rather being funded on a model of low cost high quality, the academic side of the house is losing research dollars, struggling with keeping tuition reasonable and reduced philanthropy. In the past for those of us with both hospital and academic entities to serve, when one side of the house was having financial difficulties, the other may have been able to help them out. Today both sides are hurting financially and we all are seeing reductions in libraries every where.

Frankly, it is my opinion that we can not go on as we have, trying to save or hold on to medical librarianship as we have always known it. We need to totally reinvent ourselves. That is not to say that we do not have a very important role in providing quality evidence based health information. This is more important than ever. But the ways we do this, the settings in which we do this in, perhaps even the payment models and more, all need to change. Otherwise the bleeding will continue.

There are professions that have successfully done this. HIMSS is one. Presently the Academy of Family Physicians is embarking on a reinvention of itself called Family Physicians 2.0. There are probably other such efforts. We could learn from them.

In order for this to happen in medical librarianship we will need to challenge everything we have held dear in the past and perhaps no longer do these things. But do new things, in new ways, under new conditions. And as we design our new profession our support systems would also need to change.  This would take enormous effort on the part of us as individuals, our associations and local groups. But most importantly I think we will need the Will and the Perseverance to do so. I don’t think we have been ready for the radical changes I would see necessary for us to move towards to ensure the future of medical librarianship. Are we now?

Elaine Martin DA

Director of Library Services

Director NN/LM, NER

Lamar Soutter Library

University of Massachusetts Medical School

NLM Internship Opportunities

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

[Forwarded from NLM] 

The National Library of Medicine (NLM), located on the National Institutes of Health (NIH) campus, in Bethesda, Maryland is recruiting recent library science graduates for paid internships to fill entry level librarian or information science positions. The positions offer a unique opportunity to work at the world’s largest biomedical library, with a mission of acquiring, organizing, and disseminating the biomedical knowledge for the benefit of the public’s health.

Positions are available in:

Health Services Research, Public Health and Health Information Technology

  • Engage with the public health and health services research communities in order to create and manage health information resources that serve their needs
  • Support development of knowledge and information resources to promote interoperable exchange of data and information using standardized vocabularies and codesets, standardized survey tools and assessment instruments,  and common data elements and measures

Technical Services

  • Assist with acquisition of materials for the NLM collection and management of licensed electronic resources
  • Apply medical subject headings and supplemental metadata to citations from specialized scientific and technical materials

Preservation; Digital Preservation; Rare Book Cataloging

  • Provide proper management, preservation and care of historical and non-historical collections, including monographs, serials, archives, manuscripts, oral histories, prints, photographs, posters, ephemera, motion pictures, video recordings, sound recordings, and other materials
  • Participate in digital technology, digital imaging and preservation of analog and digital formats
  • Cataloging of rare books in the NLM’s History of Medicine Division

Consumer Health

  • Organize consumer health information about diseases, conditions, and wellness, in both English and Spanish through MedlinePlus, the NLM consumer health web site

Web Site Development and Social Media

  • Support site development, or new responsive web design for MedlinePlus
  • Contribute to social media initiatives of NLM

Data and Literature Management

  • Design qualitative and quantitative assessments of tools and processes used in the indexing of biomedical literature
  • Provide technical and research support for automated (machine-assisted) indexing initiatives involving biomedical literature
  • Assist with data content review and editing of bibliographic citations, including HTML or XML tagging and metadata application, to ensure data quality and consistency
  • Test and evaluate NLM search systems, including the content in the systems and the interfaces used to access the systems.

Communication & Outreach

  • Research and write articles for internal and external publications
  • Assist with tours, digital signage and other outreach activities
  • Assist in developing social media strategies and content

Pay: GS-9 level with a pay rate of $52,146

Benefits: health insurance, and other benefits

Eligibility: Must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher; must have graduated on or after 12/27/10

Apply through USAJobs at:

NLM is participating in the NIH Pathways Recent Graduates Program. NLM and NIH are dedicated to building a workforce that reflects diversity. NLM hires, promotes, trains, and provides career development based on merit, without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, sex (including gender identity), parental status, marital status, sexual orientation, age, disability, genetic information, or political affiliation.


Kathel Dunn, Associate Fellowship Coordinator
National Library of Medicine

Join the NLM Training Center for a New Online TOXNET Class

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

Would you like to learn more about the environmental health resources available from the National Library of Medicine? Join the NLM Training Center (NTC) from March 3-25 for Module 2 of the new online class, called “Discovering TOXNET: From Paracelsus to Nanotechnology.”

TOXNET is a web-based system of databases covering hazardous chemicals, environmental health, and toxic releases. Module 2 covers the following resources: Hazardous Substances Data Bank (HSDB), Household Products Database (HPDB), Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS), LiverTOX, Toxics Release Inventory (TRI), TOXMAP®, and Haz-Map. Note: modules are independent of each other; you do NOT need to complete Module 1 before taking Module 2. (Module 1 will be offered again at a later date). You’ll learn about the resources through videos, guided tutorials, discovery exercises, and solving real-life reference questions.

Who should take the class? Health sciences librarians and health sciences professionals interested in unlocking the information in the following resources: Hazardous Substances Data Bank (HSDB), Household Products Database (HPDB), Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS), LiverTOX, Toxics Release Inventory (TRI), TOXMAP®, and Haz-Map.

How much time? Plan for nine hours of work over three weeks (3 hours per week) on your own time followed by a 1.5 hour synchronous session using Adobe Connect. Participants who complete the class requirements are eligible for 10.5 MLA Continuing Education credits.

When? Asynchronous work on your own (total of 9 hours, allow 3 hours per week): March 3 – 20, 2014 Synchronous Adobe Connect session: March 25, 2014; choose one of two times: Noon – 1:30 pm Eastern Time; OR 3 pm – 4:30 pm Eastern Time. You will be asked to choose a time after the class opens on March 3.

To Register for this or other New England Region and NTC classes/events visit:


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