Library involvement in health informatics education for health professions students and practitioners: a scoping review
Keywords:health sciences libraries, educational services, librarian-educators, informatics education
Objective: The purpose of this scoping review is to evaluate the extent of library or librarian involvement in informatics education in the health domain.
Methods: We searched eight databases from their inception to 2019 for reports of informatics educational activities for health professionals or health professions students that involved library staff or resources. Two reviewers independently screened all titles/abstracts (n=2,247) and resolved inclusion decisions by consensus. From the full text of the 36 papers that met the inclusion criteria, we extracted data on 41 educational activities.
Results: The most frequent coded purposes of activities were “teaching clinical tools” (n=19, 46.3%) and “technology” (n=17; 41.5%). Medical students were the most frequent primary audience (34.1%), though 41.5% of activities had multiple audiences. Evaluation was reported for 24 activities (58.5%), only a few of which assessed short or post-activity impact on attitudes, knowledge, or skills. The most common long-term outcome was applying skills in other courses or clinical experiences. Thematic analysis yielded three areas of outcomes and issues for the library and organizational partners: expanded opportunities, technology and resource issues, and value demonstration.
Conclusions: Limited published examples of health informatics educational activities provide models for library roles in informatics education. More librarians should report on their informatics educational activities and provide sufficient details on the interventions and their evaluation. This would strengthen the evidence base about the potential impact of libraries within informatics education.
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