School of Library and Information Studies

LIS 520 Outline

LIS 520: Introduction to Health Sciences Librarianship
Course Outline
Winter 2016


Course Coordinator: Trish Chatterley        


Phone: 780.492.7933

Office: 2K3.11 Walter C. Mackenzie Health Sciences Centre

Office hours: By appointment

Other instructors: Sandy Campbell, Thane Chambers, Liza Chan, Dagmara Chojecki, Liz Dennett, Marlene Dorgan, Linda Slater, Lisa Tjosvold

Calendar Description:         

Information resources and their administration in a specialized field and for a specialized clientele. The emphasis is on the nature of the field, problems of collection development, bibliographic access, retrieval and use by the clientele, and administrative issues in solving these problems. Specialized fields regularly examined are law, business, and health sciences. Prerequisites are variable, contact department for more information.


Course Objectives:

  1. To provide a basic understanding of the practice of health sciences librarianship, and the current key issues and trends of the field.
  2. To introduce students to different user groups within health sciences and the various work environments of health sciences librarians.
  3. To develop students’ abilities to select, evaluate, and use basic health sciences information sources and databases;
  4. To introduce students to evidence based practice within health sciences.


Measurable Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs):

Students will be able to analyze new resources quickly, and determine when and for what purposes they will be most useful.

Students will demonstrate understanding of advanced search strategy development across different databases and interfaces.

Students will examine literature pertaining to issues or trends in health sciences librarianship through collaborative preparation of papers and presentations.



Topics include major resources in health sciences, collections issues, literature searching specific to health sciences, evidence-based practice, professional practice issues and trends, patient education, and an overview of the many health sciences environments in which librarians work and types of services they provide.


Lectures, discussions, readings, demonstrations, small-group work, guest lectures, hands-on learning, and student presentations.

Course Relationships:

Pre-requisite: LIS 501

Required Texts:

None. Readings will be drawn from journal literature available via the University of Alberta Libraries.

Assignments and Weighting:



Due Date:

% of Final Grade

Class Participation

Assessed throughout the term


Paired Database Presentation

January 26, 2016


Database Interface Search and Save

February 2, 2016


Systematic Review search protocol

March 1, 2016


In-class drug information worksheet

March 1, 2016


Paired Final Paper & Presentation

Presentations: March 22 and 29, 2016

Paper: April 5, 2016





School of Library and Information Studies Grading Statement:

Grades reflect professional judgements of student achievement made by instructors. These judgements are based on a combination of absolute achievement and relative performance in class. The instructor should mark in terms of raw scores, rank the assignments in order of merit, and with due attention to the verbal descriptions of the various grades, assign an appropriate final letter grade.

Academic Integrity:

The University of Alberta is committed to the highest standards of academic integrity and honesty. Students are expected to be familiar with these standards regarding academic honesty and to uphold the policies of the University in this respect. Students are particularly urged to familiarize themselves with the provisions of the Code of Student Behaviour (online at and avoid any behaviour which could potentially result in suspicions of cheating, plagiarism, misrepresentation of facts and/or participation in an offence. Academic dishonesty is a serious offence and can result in suspension or expulsion from the University.

Students should also be mindful of the SLIS Copyright Policy.

Inclusive Language and Equity:

The Faculty of Education is committed to providing an environment of respect for all people within the university community and to educating faculty, staff, and students in developing teaching and learning contexts that are welcoming to all. The Faculty recommends that students and staff use inclusive language to create a classroom atmosphere in which students’ experiences and views are treated with equal respect and value in relation to their gender, racial background, sexual orientation and ethnic background. Students who require accommodations in this course due to a disability affecting mobility, vision, hearing, learning, or mental or physical health are advised to discuss their needs with Specialized Support and Disability Services.

Recording of Lectures:

Recording of lectures is permitted only with the prior written consent of the professor or if recording is part of an approved accommodation plan.

Policy about course outlines can be found in Section 23.4(2) of the University Calendar.