Readiness for Learning in a Paperless Environment: the library’s role in curricular support

Authors:Knight, Karen, Claude Moore Health Sciences LibraryUniversity of Virginia Ramsey, Ellen, Claude Moore Health Sciences LibraryUniversity of Virginia ORCID icon

Background: One of the many innovations of the NxGen Curriculum has been the commitment to operate in a nearly-paperless environment by relying heavily upon learning materials that are online such as books, handouts, Powerpoints, podcasts, course objectives, and self-paced online instruction. While some degree of comfort with electronic materials comes with students from their undergraduate experiences, the move to a nearly 100% online environment, while simultaneously learning to navigate the medical school experience, may be a daunting requirement. To prepare for success, the students need reliable personal technology and support, as well as assistance in building skills for dealing with learning in an online environment – such as annotating and organizing pdfs and other file types – in a sense creating digital notebooks.

Educational Innovations: The Health Sciences Library has been able to facilitate the students’ readiness to succeed in this online world through modifications to our library orientation, facility, collections, and services.

Our poster will detail the Library’s role in facilitation of student knowledge transfer through a successful student panel session, as well as changes made to orientation activities, library collections and services, and library facilities.

Orientation: Transition from a tour-based orientation to one covering technology and authentication requirements for successful anywhere, anytime access to Library and SOM online resources.

Student Panel: Both the library and student organizations play roles in facilitation of student knowledge transfer through a SMD14 student panel session of best practices in paperless study and learning techniques presented to SMD15 students.

Services & Collections: Librarian partnerships with SOM faculty to identify online resources when available; focusing selections on unlimited simultaneous access to support reading assignments; recommendations of electronic notebook and PDF reading tools.

Facility: Low-cost, high-impact changes such as device charging bar, workstations with multiple monitors, laptop enabled large monitors, installation of recommended PDF and electronic notebook tools on library public computers.

Results and Conclusions: The Library has partnered with students, faculty, and the SOM to enhance our programs and services to assist students to thrive, not just survive, in a paperless learning environment. The student panel, technology-focused orientation activities, online library resources, and facility enhancements will continue, as will monitoring of additional approaches to support the paperless NxGen curriculum.

Category: Innovations in Medical Education

medicine, undergraduate medical education, library, curriculum, technology
All rights reserved (no additional license for public reuse)
Source Citation:

Knight, Karen, and Ellen Ramsey. "Readiness for Learning in a Paperless Environment: the library’s role in curricular support." Medical Libraries Association Mid-Atlantic Chapter Meeting, Baltimore, MD. 2012.

University of Virginia
Published Date:
Oct. 14, 2012