SLA Biomedical and Life Sciences Division

2008 Contributed Posters

The Biomedical and Life Sciences 2008 Contributed Posters
 Presented at the SLA Annual Conference, Seattle, WA

Date: Tuesday, June 17, 2008 7:00PM - 9:00PM
: Librarians' Roles in a Changing Environment. What else do we do for our libraries, parent institutions and communities?

From Exam Room Jargon to Living Room Language: Librarians’ Roles in Improving Healthcare ConversationsbyMegan Barkelar and Melinda Orebaugh, Gundersen Lutheran Health System, La Crosse, Wisconsin.
Abstract: There are many reasons why patients do not understand what clinicians tell them but key among them is inadequate health literacy (the capacity of an individual to obtain, process, and understand basic information and services needed to make appropriate decisions regarding their health). The need for today’s patients to be “health literate” is greater than ever due to increasingly complex medical care. Current data indicates that more than a third of American adults - 89 million people - lack sufficient health literacy to effectively undertake and execute needed medical treatments and preventive care. Low health literacy affects all segments of the population and contributes to medication errors, missed appointments, and adverse medical outcomes. Economic consequences of low health literacy for the US health care system are considerable with estimated costs of $50-$73 billion annually. Great Rivers Partners for Health-e People, a collaborative community project, uniquely positions librarians as health literacy educators. Librarians developed and are delivering training for healthcare providers, health sciences students and healthcare consumers in Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota. Clinician-patient communication is an important factor in health literacy; therefore, two online courses, Health Literacy Awareness: Plain Language for your Patients and Health-e People Ask Questions, were created to improve verbal and written communication by: 1) encouraging clinicians to use plain or “living room” language, free of medical jargon, with patients; and 2) encouraging patients to ask three basic questions of their clinicians. In an ever changing healthcare environment, health sciences librarians serve as catalysts in improving healthcare conversations.

Creating ARUP Consult: How a Librarian can Contribute to a Content Creation Project by Jill Holman, ARUP Laboratories, Salt Lake City, Utah.
Abstract: We already know that many librarians have immersed themselves in the working groups of their users, but still the focus has often been on reference services. How about immersing librarians to create resources, not just research and access them?
We will look at a librarian as key team member for a new guide called ARUP Consult, which was created to help clinicians decide which lab tests to order. This librarian was a bridge outside the institution in that we created this guide to reach out to clinicians nationally, not for our institution, nor for our clients. It distills essential test ordering information from the flood of new medical knowledge, with the goal to help improve patient care. It is available for free via Web and PDA and is improved continuously.
The librarian was integral to the whole project process (see attached diagram for an overview of roles). Perhaps most significantly, the librarian kept the team focused on the user. Sometimes writers concentrate on creating good writing and IT staff center on hardware and software. After working for years as a librarian, using many resources and helping confused people, a librarian develops a great sense for how to best organize a resource to be most user-friendly.
Lastly, we can explore the impact of the guide through awards won, clinician anecdotes and web statistics. For example, we have recently won two awards and we have confirmed from talking with physicians that this resource has helped them to more effectively treat patients.

Citizen Science: Information Issues, Library Solutions by Allison Scripa,  School of Information Science, University of Tennessee, Knoxville. or
Abstract: Librarians and information scientists are uniquely able to address issues within citizen science, a form of research in which scientists analyze data collected by volunteers without scientific training. Issues of data quality and data sharing among projects can be addressed by developing appropriate standards for data and metadata schema. Research protocols, training materials, and systems for participants' responses that meet the needs of researchers and are user-friendly for volunteer participants also need further development. Lessons from system and usability engineering in information science could be applied to meet these needs and improve materials and interfaces. Citizen science also needs to be promoted to scientists as a boundless source of data and to laypeople as a legitimate means of participating in scientific research. Libraries, with their special relationships with researchers and the public, are ideally placed to promote citizen science and recruit volunteers. Citizen science projects uniquely benefit scientists, participants, and society as a whole. Never before have scientists been able to collect such large sets of data about the natural world. Participants in these projects learn about science in practice and increase their scientific literacy. Society itself benefits from citizen science both because of increased scientific literacy in the population (leading to more-informed policy and better medical decisions) and amazing new discoveries that increase our knowledge of the universe and its workings. The poster will describe citizen science, give examples of current projects, examine possible citizen science and library partnerships and explain how such partnerships could benefit both fields.

Collaboration with Scientists: Gathering Momentum by Louisa Worthington Rogers and Howard J. Silver, Science Library, M.I.T., Cambridge, MA
Abstract: The MIT Libraries have extended support for interdisciplinary bioscience research by using a project-based collaborative strategy. Last year's poster on "Inquiry-Based Outreach: Library Research Project on Bioscience Leads to Innovative Collaborations" described the genesis of several projects. Ongoing projects include co-sponsored instruction programs by informatics scientists, and collaborative funding for subscription bioinformatics resources.
New projects include the development of outreach models for departments and an expanded web presence to support bioinformatics software and databases. Two projects
with the Harvard Medical School Countway Library involve the creation of bioinformatics video tutorials and cooperation on efforts to raise faculty awareness about scholarly communication issues. In addition to instructional collaborations with scientists, library staff have created a "Bioinformatics for Beginners" course that is taught by librarians.
The Engineering and Science Libraries have formed a standing Interdisciplinary Biosciences Group (IBG) as an umbrella group to manage this bioscience support program. IBG gives us the capacity to take on in a sustainable way such projects as the creation of a new position for a Bioinformatics Librarian to coordinate new service models for the support of bioinformatics. Future directions will include participation in grant proposals to develop support of data infrastructure for life sciences research.

The Greening of SLA: What Can We Do To Help? by Dorothy Barr,  Ernst Mayr Library, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA.
Abstract: Following up on Al Gore’s Keynote Address to the SLA 2007 Conference in Denver, SLA is undertaking a new initiative to become an environmentally sensitive organization. This is especially appropriate with the 2008 Conference due to take place in Seattle, a city that has long been noted for environmental awareness and citywide green initiatives. The poster will include:
�� A summary of SLA’s position;
�� Information about Seattle’s environmental initiatives, including public transport, green hotels, and more;
�� A summary of suggestions made by members of both DBIO and the Sci-Tech Division in listserv discussion in December;
�� Suggestions gleaned from other organizations;
�� Space and sticky notes will be provided for attendees to make their own suggestions. After the event, these comments will be compiled and shared with the membership in Biofeedback.

Library-based Bioinformatics Support: Changing Perceptions, Changing Roles by Michele R. Tennant, Health Science Center Libraries and U.F. Genetics Institute, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL.
Abstract:  As the use of bioinformatics databases and analysis tools becomes more prevalent in biological research from agronomy to zoology, libraries and librarians are stepping into the role of bioinformatics support providers. Library administrators are hiring both librarians and non-librarians to fill this niche, and more and more researchers and students are using the services of such information providers.
This poster presents a quantitative and qualitative overview of the bioinformatics support services provided by academic and health sciences libraries in the United States, concentrating on three aspects of service – consultations, education, and “other” services. Additionally the poster will explore the rationale behind librarians and libraries providing these bioinformatics support services. Why are libraries the logical place for such support, and what sorts of services can librarians provide? Data will be presented from three separate entities – an online survey of library-based bioinformatics support providers, interviews with library directors and bioinformatics support specialists from three institutions, and comments from focus groups of research scientists.

Data Request Services at an Urban Public Health Department by Ann Glusker
University of Washington, Seattle, WA.
Abstract: The author works as the Seattle-King County Public Health department’s “data request epidemiologist”, a dedicated information specialist. This role involves answering health data-related questions for a variety of requesters (media, university, government, private individuals, community organizations, etc.), and handling about 225 such requests a year. Many of the requests are similar to library reference questions, while others involve customized data analysis and provision of a product (table, chart, short write-up, etc.). The changing nature and provision of information services in general and health information in particular mean that the public health department is considering innovative ways in which to connect the population it serves to vital health information. Ideas for updating data request services include offering technical assistance and internet searching strategy training, developing collaborations with agencies such as libraries, developing data user guidelines, and integrating the use of Web 2.0 technologies.
This poster will outline the data request service. It will show the types of requesters and question topic areas, data sets and resources used, the manner of responding to requests (customized analyses, phone consultations, referral, training, etc.), changes in the service over the past ten years, current challenges, and future trends in providing data request
services (including those ideas outlined above). Two charts will be included, showing requests by month and year, and the top ten data sources used for answering requests across the ten year period of the service.

Collaboration Beyond Affiliation: the Google Gadget Gateway to PubMed
by Pamela Shaw,  Galter Health Sciences Library, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL.
Abstract: In order to create an effective Web 2.0 Google Gadget interface to PubMed, programmers at the Feinberg School of Medicine's Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center Bioinformatics Core utilized the Galter Library's staff, meeting space and expertise. Part of the Google Summer of Code project, the "g3p" gadget was created by a student in Texas, is hosted by the Bioinformatics Core server, and was tested and demonstrated by the Galter Library Biosciences Librarian. This project allowed the staff at the Galter Health Sciences Library to demonstrate their strengths in focus group organization, expert search strategies and multi-departmental liaison contacts to help the programmers produce a more powerful and effective gadget for current awareness searches of PubMed literature. This experience has raised the profile of the Biosciences Librarian as a collaborator with ties across numerous departments, and opened doors to her to serve the community in such diverse roles as student-advisor pairing, faculty publication database structuring and as a member of the graduate student development committee.

Biodiversity Heritage Library: A Museum-Library Collaboration for Scientists by Constance Rinaldo, Ernst Mayr Library,  Harvard University, Cambridge, MA.
Abstract: The mission of the Biodiversity Heritage Library (BHL) is to make freely accessible as much of the published literature of biodiversity as is legally possibly. Representatives of ten major natural history museums, libraries, botanical libraries, and research institutions in the United Kingdom and the United States joined in 2005 to develop a plan to digitize
the published literature of biodiversity held in their respective collections and to make that literature available for open access and responsible use as a part of a global “biodiversity commons.” This consortium of collections represents a uniquely extensive assemblage of the biodiversity literature. Web-based access to these collections will provide a substantial benefit to all researchers, especially those living and working in the developing word. Mass digitization projects lack the discipline-specific focus of this partnership and may fail to capture significant elements of the biodiversity literature. The purpose of this poster presentation is to describe the collaboration and to highlight the unique features of BHL.The BHL partnership, as a cornerstone of the Encyclopedia of Life, will work with the global taxonomic community to ensure that the literature is available to all. Discussions with the scientific, biological, publisher and computer science communities will inform the evolving project. The BHL Portal will create an environment that will transform the nature of scientific inquiry and accelerate research in life sciences and conservation: a freely accessible, service-based portal that couples existing databases with digitized, searchable images with OCR text. Taxonomically intelligent services have been designed by the uBio team from the MBL/WHOI library to identify common and scientific names through time.

The University of California Riverside Libraries took a valued role in events marking the history of the UCR campus by Marie Bronoel, Science Library, University of California Riverside, Riverside, CA.
Abstract: The University of California Riverside was founded in 1954 as a Land Grant College, but its “roots” were formed during the boom of the citrus industry, deemed to be California’s “second gold rush.”
Riverside was strategically located in the citrus belt and in the early 1900s fruit growers and regional leaders lobbied the government for support in pioneering citriculture research. When the Citrus Experiment Station in Riverside was finally approved, the community was jubilant. The station officially opened in 1907 and concerned itself with soil management, irrigation, plant breeding, entomology, and plant pathology. The UC campus at Riverside continues its’ tradition and legacy of the past with new and renowned programs in the sciences, such as integrative genome biology, and entomology.
In 2006-2007, the UCR Libraries joined with the UCR College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences in planning three major events commemorating the 100th Anniversary of the Citrus Experiment Station. The libraries had a key role in the centennial celebrations. Many valuable historical resources (newspapers, photographs, manuscripts, and original citrus labels) from the UCR Libraries’ Special Collections were
used in the events, and UCR librarians developed three projects relating to citrus history and research.
For the Centennial events, I was the point person, facilitator, and promoter of the UCR Libraries and its collections. I designed promotional materials and created three exhibit booths, each one specific to the event:

1. April 22, 2006. 100th Anniversary Kickoff of the Citrus Experiment Station and Open House for the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences
The Kickoff was an all-day educational fair open to the public. The fair featured citrus tasting, tours of the orchards and field station, informational booths, and a barbecue and live music. The UCR Libraries hosted one of 40 booths. We displayed historical photographs and had computers set up to access to the libraries’ online scientific resources. The mayor of Riverside was one of many visitors who took interest in the libraries’ booth.

2. February 14, 2007. Centennial Gala
The Gala, held at the Riverside Convention Center, was a formal and festive affair that included dinner with a citrus theme, special program, honored guests, and a few select exhibits. The UCR Libraries displayed core books on citrus research and spotlighted two digital projects undertaken by UCR librarians that focused on the history of the Citrus Experiment Station.

3. April 21, 2007. Riverside Citrus Heritage Celebration and CNAS Open House
The Citrus Heritage Celebration was developed in part with the City of Riverside. It was envisioned to be a community event replacing the city’s former Orange Blossom Festival. The UCR Libraries sponsored a lighthearted family activity titled Picture Yourself in Riverside History. The public was invited to pose as characters in local history and have their photograph taken. Thumbnail images of the faces were mounted onto the UCR Libraries’ website and after the event visitors were able to download their own pictures. Children and adults participated in the fun and even the UCR Chancellor got into the spirit. Over 400 photographs were taken and the website was visited more than 4500 times.

All of the above required a great deal of planning, cooperation, and collaboration within many departments of the libraries and other units on campus. The UCR Libraries became a visible and valued partner in the centennial celebrations. Attached are some photographs of the library exhibits. The following link describes the Riverside Citrus Heritage Celebration and CNAS Open House:



Rev. October 2008