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Supporting the Occupational Therapy Student in the Production and Dissemination of Systematic Reviews: An Interprofessional Collaboration among Librarians and Occupational Therapy Faculty, Scott Memorial Library, Center for Teaching and Learning, Thomas Jefferson University


Poster presented at 2015 Medical Library Association annual meeting in Austin Texas. May 15-20, 2015.



This poster describes the outcomes of a curriculum-based collaboration between librarians and OT faculty (‘collaboration’) to enhance graduate student skills for conducting a systematic review (SR); the collaboration included database instruction, bibliographic management software, and culminated in student presentations to healthcare practitioners for continuing education credit. Three outcome areas are discussed: impact of the collaboration on student satisfaction and perceived competence; characteristics of the included literature; and the dissemination of SR findings to healthcare practitioners.


Three librarians participated in the instruction and the institutional repository (Jefferson Digital Commons; JDC) deposits. A total of 132 students over a period of two years (2013-2014) completed the curriculum, engaging with librarians and OT faculty to iteratively build on skills. At the conclusion of their curriculum, the capstone presentations were recorded and made freely available through the JDC. Quantitative data were examined with descriptive statistics in SPSS, and qualitative data were thematically coded by hand: course evaluations, practitioner attendance, bibliographic evaluations of the systematic reviews, and download statistics from the institutional repository.


Students reported on open-ended course evaluation questions that among the top three concepts learned was ‘how to conduct a replicable and effective search.’ On multiple answer questions 83.6% of students selected the ‘collaborative librarian-faculty lecture’ as among the most helpful lectures offered, and 78.2% selected ‘working with librarian staff and course mentors to develop a search strategy’ as highly rated among course activities. Bibliographic data were extracted from 22 of 28 capstone presentations available for analysis (2013-2014) in the institutional repository, which contained 305 citations from 157 journals. The average of age of included articles was 4.8 years (SD=4.2, Range=0-24). Among the top 10 cited journals were 2 occupational therapy, 5 rehabilitation, and 3 specialty. Overall health care practitioner attendance at student capstones from 2012-2014 was 323. JDC recordings (as of 1/6/2015) had been accessed from 25 different countries, and are located most frequently via Google, JDC, and GoogleScholar. The total number of views was 1,446, and the total number of hours viewed was 163 hours.


Librarian-faculty collaborations resulted in high student perception of competence to conduct systematic reviews, utilization of a broad variety of peer-reviewed journals, and enhanced dissemination of evidence.