January 19, 2022

New Research Article: “Library Instruction in Medical Education: a Survey of Current Practices in the United States and Canada”

The following article was recently published in the latest issue of the Journal of the Medical Library Association (JMLA).


Library Instruction in Medical Education: a Survey of Current Practices in the United States and Canada


Amanda M. Nevius
Tufts University

A’Llyn Ettien
Boston University Medical Campus

Alissa P. Link
Boston University Medical Campus

Laura Y. Sobel
Boston University Medical Campus


Journal of the American Library Association
Vol 106, No 1 (2018)
DOI: 10.5195/jmla.2018.374



The most recent survey on instruction practices in libraries affiliated with accredited medical institutions in the United States was conducted in 1996. The present study sought to update these data, while expanding to include Canadian libraries. Additional analysis was undertaken to test for statistically significant differences between library instruction in the United States and Canada and between libraries affiliated with highly ranked and unranked institutions.


A twenty-eight-question survey was distributed to libraries affiliated with accredited US and Canadian medical schools to assess what and how often librarians teach, as well as how librarians are involved in the curriculum committee and if they are satisfied with their contact with students and faculty. Quantitative data were analyzed with SAS, R, and MedCalc.


Most of the seventy-three responding libraries provided instruction, both asynchronously and synchronously. Library instruction was most likely to be offered in two years of medical school, with year one seeing the most activity. Database use was the most frequently taught topic, and libraries reported a median of five librarians providing instruction, with larger staffs offering slightly more education sessions per year. Libraries associated with highly ranked schools were slightly more likely to offer sessions that were integrated into the medical school curriculum in year four and to offer sessions in more years overall.

Direct to Full Text Article: HTML Version ||| PDF Version (10 pages)

Direct to Complete Table of Contents For JMLA: Vol 106, No 1 (2018)

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.