Apps & Gadgets: Holiday Shopping Bonus Edition

A big thank you to all who attended our Winter 2015 HSL Info Expo last Thursday! The library team presented on a variety of technology topics, with our usual dose of fun and some holiday good cheer. Our newest segment, Apps & Gadgets, made a return appearance, and this time it was all about holiday shopping.

We always have far more content to share with our guests than time permits, so today we’re bringing you Apps & Gadgets: Holiday Shopping Bonus Edition! Here are the cool apps and gadgets that didn’t make it into our presentation, but that you should definitely check out before the holiday shopping season comes to an end.


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Let’s talk turkey: The truth about tryptophan

Post-Thanksgiving NapThis Thursday after digging into your delicious Thanksgiving meal, you might find yourself slouching on your sofa, pants feeling a little snug, and you might find yourself feeling a dozy. Your first inclination will likely be to blame that delectable turkey and all of that tryptophan. Because turkey has tryptophan, and tryptophan makes us sleepy, right?


This may likely be a myth that we have all been telling ourselves. The science behind tryptophan is pretty clear: tryptophan is an essential amino acid that our bodies need to help make niacin and serotonin. Our bodies do not produce tryptophan, so we must get it from our diet. Serotonin is believed to help us sleep better and stabilize our moods. It would appear, then, if tryptophan helps us make serotonin, and serotonin helps us sleep, that consuming tryptophan would make us sleepy, right?

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October is National Health Literacy Month

“Health Literacy” is the ability to read, understand and act upon health information.1 Health literacy is defined by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, Title V, as “the degree to which an individual has the capacity to obtain, communicate, process, and understand basic health information and services to make appropriate health decisions.”2 According to the National Action Plan to Improve Health Literacy, almost 9 out of 10 adults have difficulty using routine health information.1


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A Treat (No Tricks!) for National Medical Librarians Month

Medical Librarians are so awesome, we have an entire month devoted to us! That’s right, October is National Medical Librarians Month. All this month, we are encouraging COM to participate in a little contest to raise awareness of the importance of working with your medical librarians when searching for evidence based information. If you want to play, simply head to the second floor of the medical education building and look for these flyers:

October is National Medical Librarians Month!

October is National Medical Librarians Month!

Then stop by the health sciences library front desk and let our friendly staff know:

(1) How many of these “Are You a Risk Taker?” flyers did you see on the second floor; and

(2) What event are the flyers advertising?

Answer correctly and you will be rewarded with a pretty awesome treat (no tricks, promise)!

Happy hunting! And remember to visit the health sciences library to ask for some expert help from our wonderful medical librarians.


National Medical Librarians Month starts October 1st

Google Solo

Obviously, geeky references and librarianship go hand in hand. This pleases me.

Seriously though, where has the time gone and how is it already a week from October? 2015 has been busy for our library staff, but we couldn’t ask for a better group of colleagues and students to be so busy for. Thanks for letting  us do what we do for you!

October 1st marks the beginning of National Medical Librarians month. The Medical Library Association dedicates each October to celebrating information professionals who provide expert assistance and guidance to students, faculty,  other health care providers and everyday consumers looking for health information inside health sciences and medical libraries.

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Our New Traveling Exhibit Is Here!

Come check out our newest traveling exhibit from the National Library of Medicine :“Every Necessary Care and Attention: George Washington & Medicine.”

George Washington

George Washington, by William Williams, 1794

Learn about the time in our country when the practice of medicine was slowly becoming a licensed profession. The exhibit features the history of George Washington and how his story is intertwined with the practice of medicine. Washington, who, although never wounded in battle, was injured several times while horseback riding, almost died from a severe case of dysentery, and who suffered from anthrax, pneumonia, and skin cancer. Washington’s wife, Martha, contracted measles soon after they married, and later suffered gall bladder disease. Both George and Martha Washington experienced seasonal malaria and lung problems. Finally, in their old age, they suffered from rheumatism, hearing loss, and loss of eyesight.

Come see our newest exhibit to learn why standard medical treatment was not able to save Washington from his final illness.

The exhibit, “Every Necessary Care and Attention: George Washington & Medicine,” will be on display in the library atrium through October 10, 2015.

NLM Exhibit: George Washington & Medicine

Our latest traveling exhibit from the National Library of Medicine, on display in the library atrium

Ted Talk Tuesday: Until We Meet Again…Get Your TED Fix

TED Talks

Last year the library featured “TED Talk Tuesdays” on the library’s giant display in the Commons area. Our students gave us some constructive feedback on these events, including: while they all love TED Talks, students found it difficult to follow the talks with Closed Captioning, as the volume on the library TV is turned down; some students also reported that they like having the news on all the time, as it usually is; finally, some students pointed out that it was difficult to watch all of a TED Talk if they were just passing by or studying.

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Info Expo Summer 2015 Technology Symposium – Our Take

Last Thursday, the Health Sciences Library team hosted another edition of our popular lunch and learn-esque series, the HSL Info Expo! Thanks again to everyone that was able to attend. We tried something a little different this time, opting to host the event in the summer instead of the spring as is typical, and gave the event a more conference/symposium feel to suit the information that was being provided (usually we do some sort of theme). We had a great time! These selfie-stick pictures seem to indicate that many of our attendees also enjoyed the session:

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