Using Social Media to Create Virtual Interest Groups in Hospital Libraries

Conference object English OPEN
Lin, Yongtao (Tom Baker Knowledge Centre) ; Ranjit, Kathryn M.E. (Peter Lougheed Knowledge Centre) ; GreyNet, Grey Literature Network Service (2011)
  • Publisher: Amsterdam : TextRelease, 2012
  • Subject: Collective learning | Social media | Social networking | Virtual interest groups | 05B - Information science, librarianship

Introduction - Social networking has positively impacted the realm of human interactivity. Libraries have traditionally been viewed as a place for research and information seeking. Web 2.0 technologies, such as blogs and Instant Messaging (IM), are starting to change users' experiences of current library services. In this quality improvement study we aim to examine whether the opportunity for enhanced researcher-librarian interaction that Web 2.0 tools provide creates a synergistic experience for health research interest groups. In addition, we will explore if these tools increase efficiency in obtaining information and/or improve quality and quantity of research evidence. Method - This study was conducted by two hospital librarians working in tertiary hospitals. An email was distributed to the health care professionals from these two sites, inviting participation in two online research interest groups, Clinical Practice Guidelines and Patient Safety. A pre-survey of participants was intended to assess the comfort level of this group with Web 2.0 tools and gauge their level of use both professionally and personally. We created a virtual interest group environment to incorporate the following Web 2.0 tools into the existing library website: user blogs, enabling commenting to facilitate a knowledge-sharing atmosphere; chat software to assist with easy access to acquired information; and Delicious tagging for a more systematic documentation of grey literature. A post-survey will be conducted after three months in order to re-evaluate the participants' experiences with social media, in particular with the online interest group environment. Research Implications - Findings from this study can be used to illuminate future trends into the discoverability of grey literature with social media tools and establish a basis for integrating Web 2.0 tools in library websites and services. Includes: Conference preprint, Powerpoint presentation, Abstract and Biographical notes XA International
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