LIBR 534 (3) Health Information Sources and Services


MAS students: Completion of the MAS Core courses, plus permission of the instructor.

MLIS and Dual students: Some electives can be taken in conjunction with the MLIS Core courses; consult with the MLIS Program Chair for recommendations.

GOAL: This goal of this course is to provide students with a strong foundation in health sciences librarianship.


At the end of the course, students will have a foundation in:

  • Libraries and information services in health; health care in Canada as a setting for libraries;
  • Health care trends (i.e. consumer health, evidence-based medicine, informatics) and impact on libraries and services;
  • Reference services and users, including print & electronic sources, using knowledge of specific sources, and how they meet the information needs of specific users;
  • Online databases in health librarianship;
  • Management of collections, services, personnel, projects.
  • National and international associations, new initiatives and/or trends in health librarianship.

Upon completion of the course, students will be able – in the health library context – to:

  • Design and implement library support for health and health care – clinicians, researchers, planners and administrators (government, industry, health care system), students (basic and clinical), teachers, patients and consumers;
  • Discuss health care as a setting for libraries, and health care trends (ie. Evidence-based practice);
  • Provide reference services, including print and Internet resources, using knowledge of specific sources and their usefulness in meeting the information needs of specific users;
  • Search bibliographic and other databases (ie. MEDLINE, PubMed, etc) utilizing controlled vocabularies;
  • Undertake end-user instruction, and mediated search services;
  • Discuss aspects of technical & public services, and resource sharing particular to health science libraries;
  • Analyze information needs in health, including communication patterns and media, information seeking behaviour, and the transfer of research into practice, and apply this analysis to library service delivery;
  • Discuss the literatures of the health sciences;
  • Describe national and international services and resources supporting health libraries


  • History of medicine & health librarianship
  • Controlled vocabularies & bibliographic database searching in health
  • Reference services to health users
  • End user groups & instruction in health libraries
  • Research & publishing cycles in sciences
  • Perspectives from the field
  • Resource sharing & interlibrary loan
  • Evidence-based medicine & Informatics
  • Complementary & Alternative Medicine
  • Consumer Health
  • Entrepreneurial work in health libraries
  • Management of health libraries
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