Monday, July 28, 2014

WLRC blog moving to a new interface!

The Witer Learning Resource Centre has been using Google's Blogger platform for the past 5+ years as a portal for our news updates, but we have now moved to a new integrated news feed available through our website. Please consider signing up for continued news updates through our news feed. We are also now on Twitter and Facebook to ensure we reach our readers through whatever news portal they prefer.

Thank you for staying in touch with us!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Finding the latest evidence-based research as a practicing optometrist

As more peer-reviewed journals are becoming freely available (see our February 2014 blog post), how can researchers and clinicians identify the best portals for searching this literature? We recently analyzed four of our most popular search interfaces (research databases) to compare their coverage of our vision science journal collection. While it might be assumed that a paid-for subscription database would index more sources, we were surprised to find how well free research databases were, based on the number of optometric journals indexed. Read more about this comparison in a recent article entitled "Finding the Latest Evidence-based Research (PDF)", written my WLRC staff and published in the School of Optometry and Vision Science Newsletter (PDF).

Friday, February 28, 2014

Open Access and its relevance for practicing optometrists

Practising optometrists need access to evidence-based research to answer clinical questions in order to provide the best possible support to patients. With the prohibitive cost of subscription rates for many vision science journals, providing access to important medical information makes Open Access (OA) literature increasingly valuable. The following article (PDF), written my WLRC staff and published in the School of Optometry and Vision Science Newsletter, provides tips on the best OA resources available to practicing optometrists.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

New research methods database!

University of Waterloo Library Services now subscribes to SAGE Research Methods Online, which can be accessed from our  faculty or graduate student web pages on the Witer Learning Resource Centre (WLRC) home page.

This is an extensive collection (700+ titles) of encyclopedias, textbooks, journal articles, and videos on research methodologies, concepts, and philosophies. Designed to be useful in all disciplines, including the health sciences, it is an intuitive tool that can support students and faculty who are thinking about, or currently engaged in, a research project. If you need a research term explained, if you need an overview of theoretical approaches that could be used to guide your research, or if you want to know how to apply a specific technique, this is the resource for you!

Simply search for your topic or term to get started. Use the Refine by Content option to the right of your results to help you find the answer most useful to you. University of Waterloo students, faculty, and staff have access to the entire collection so you will be able to view any content you are interested in! SAGE Research Methods Online is also available off-campus – just remember to Connect from Home first!

Example of a SAGE research methods search

If you are not sure what you’re looking for, or your results are less than useful, try using the Methods Map. Similar to a mind map, this is a visual representation of the relationships between research techniques, methods, and theories. It allows you to easily narrow in on specific methods or techniques, or expand to overarching frameworks.

Example of a SAGE research Methods Map application

Exporting to bibliographic management software, such as RefWorks, is supported and there are many more useful features. Take a minute to explore and let us know what you think!

If you have any questions come to the WLRC or email us.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Data Management Day @ University of Waterloo

The second annual data management event at the University of Waterloo will take place on October 24th, and will entail a morning of lively presentations from researchers across various fields of study, and at different stages of data storage planning. The morning’s events will explore the unique issues facing researchers today as they decide where, how, and what data to store.
Featured guest speakers include:
  • John Thompson, Associate Vice President, Research Operations, University of Waterloo
  • Carl Haas, Tier 1 Canada Research Chair and Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Waterloo
  • Julie Friddell, Information Services and Science Manager, University of Waterloo
  • Adam Saunders, climate model research assistant, and co-founder of a location intelligence technology company
For more information on Research Data Management @ University of Waterloo 2013 and to register for this event, please visit the Library’s Data Management Guide, which will be updated with the latest event information throughout the month.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

A sad farewell and a warm welcome

Kathy MacDonald, who has been the Liaison Librarian and manager of the Witer Learning Resource Centre (WLRC) over the past 5 years, is moving across the street to a new position as Head of Information Services and Resources at the University of Waterloo Dana Porter Library. We wish Kathy all the best in her new position - our loss, but maybe not really a farewell as she is not moving far enough away for us to lose touch!

And we have a new librarian joining the staff of the WLRC. Rebecca Hutchinson, who is currently the Liaison Librarian for the University of Waterloo, School of Public Health and Health Systems and the Department of Kinesiology, will cover Kathy's librarian duties until a permanent replacement is hired. Rebecca will be a great fit for Optometry as activities relating to collection development, instruction and reference services will be similar to her experience with health studies here at uWaterloo.

In addition to her work with uWaterloo Library Services, Rebecca also has experience working in public libraries, and is currently working part time at the Region of Waterloo library branches in St. Jacobs, Bloomingdale and Elmira. She completed a Bachelor of Environmental Studies here at uWaterloo, and Master of Library and Information Science from the University of Western Ontario.

Rebecca will have office hours at the WLRC between 11am and 2pm, Monday to Friday, and you can contact her by phone or e-mail.

Welcome Rebecca, and we look forward to working with you!

Friday, May 31, 2013

Witer Learning Resource Centre open this weekend for CE!

The School of Optometry and Vision Science annual Continuing Education (CE) program is this weekend, and similar to past years, the Witer Learning Resource Centre (WLRC) will be open for extended hours to provide access to our facilities.
  • Friday (May 31st)       9am – 5 pm
  • Saturday (June 1st)     9:30am – 6:30pm
  • Sunday (June 2nd)      9:30am – 6:30pm
If you are attending CE, please feel free to stop by, or look for our table at the career fair on Saturday. We will be showcasing the services we offer to our alumni and Canadian Association of Optometrist members!