Start Date

16-3-2020 1:00 PM

End Date

16-3-2020 1:30 PM

Author(s) Bio

Drs. Stacey Wahl and Dana Ladd are Research and Education Librarians at Tompkins-McCaw Library for the Health Sciences at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). Stacey is the liaison to the basic sciences in the School of Medicine and Dana is the Health and Wellness Librarian. Stacey and Dana bring their respective research and patron areas together to teach emerging genetic counselors about scientific literature and community health resources. Stacey received her doctorate in Biomedical Sciences from Rutgers Biomedical Health Sciences where she studied developmental neuroscience. Following a postdoctoral fellowship in biology at VCU, Stacey joined the library in 2018. As the liaison to the basic sciences, Stacey provides consultations and instruction in research support, literature searching, and grant preparation. In addition, she coordinates programming for VCU scientists, including a science communication series for postdoctoral fellows. Dana received her doctorate in Social and Behavioral Sciences at VCU, where she focused on the information needs and information sources of patients diagnosed with rare cancers. She has over nineteen years of experience as a librarian; at the Health and Wellness Library she manages the daily operations and provides consumer health resources to patients, their families, and the public. She also coordinates community health events and presentations for the library.

Presenter Status

Academic Librarian

Keywords

active learning, genetic counseling, consumer health, consumer health resources, masters students, introduction to research

Presentation Type

30 minutes (e.g. Individual)

Description of Proposal

Providing one-shot instruction sessions can be difficult, particularly in the graduate learning environment. As librarians, we want to provide students with the skills to search effectively for health information without overwhelming or confusing them. In health science graduate programs, we are expected to connect literature searching skills with the content of the courses in a manner that is engaging to students. This challenge can be exacerbated when students are new to graduate school and have not yet become familiar with scientific literature searching or the research process. Two medical librarians sought to overcome these challenges by empowering genetic counseling students in a Masters-level introduction to research class to be investigators. In an effort to engage students, the librarians incorporated an active learning session focused on genetic consumer health resources. After a brief overview of the resources, students were divided into groups and each group was assigned a consumer health website to explore and evaluate. To facilitate their exploration, students were given a particular genetic disorder to investigate. Each group reported back what they learned about the website that would be beneficial to them in their future professions as genetic counselors and how they thought patients could benefit from the site. This activity empowered students to engage in searching for reliable health information sites and provided them an opportunity to be peer instructors when they reported what they had learned. Searching for a specific disorder provided a framework and a focus for the exercise and resulted in rich and specific feedback about the different features of each genetic consumer health site. The librarians received excellent feedback from the School of Medicine faculty member who reported supporting more active engagement in future classes. Students also reported that they enjoyed the session and felt engaged in the class.

What takeaways will attendees learn from your session?

At the conclusion of the presentation attendees will be able to:

  1. Understand different active learning strategies that are amenable to one-shot instruction.

  2. Describe the ability of active learning to enhance one-shot instruction.

  3. Evaluate their own one-shot instruction for potential active learning opportunities.

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Mar 16th, 1:00 PM Mar 16th, 1:30 PM

Students as Investigators: Utilizing Active Learning to Engage Genetic Counseling Students

Providing one-shot instruction sessions can be difficult, particularly in the graduate learning environment. As librarians, we want to provide students with the skills to search effectively for health information without overwhelming or confusing them. In health science graduate programs, we are expected to connect literature searching skills with the content of the courses in a manner that is engaging to students. This challenge can be exacerbated when students are new to graduate school and have not yet become familiar with scientific literature searching or the research process. Two medical librarians sought to overcome these challenges by empowering genetic counseling students in a Masters-level introduction to research class to be investigators. In an effort to engage students, the librarians incorporated an active learning session focused on genetic consumer health resources. After a brief overview of the resources, students were divided into groups and each group was assigned a consumer health website to explore and evaluate. To facilitate their exploration, students were given a particular genetic disorder to investigate. Each group reported back what they learned about the website that would be beneficial to them in their future professions as genetic counselors and how they thought patients could benefit from the site. This activity empowered students to engage in searching for reliable health information sites and provided them an opportunity to be peer instructors when they reported what they had learned. Searching for a specific disorder provided a framework and a focus for the exercise and resulted in rich and specific feedback about the different features of each genetic consumer health site. The librarians received excellent feedback from the School of Medicine faculty member who reported supporting more active engagement in future classes. Students also reported that they enjoyed the session and felt engaged in the class.