School of Medicine Library

University of South Carolina


Winter 2000

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FROM the Director's Desk

by Ruth Riley

I am very pleased to have joined the faculty of the University of South Carolina School of Medicine. It is evident that the library is a highly valued service to the faculty, staff and students of the school. My first priority in the coming months will be to meet the library's users on the VA and Richland campuses. I met with the presidents of the M1, M2, and M3 classes on January 28 to solicit feedback about the library's resources and services. A summary of their requests, and the library's response, follows. I am looking forward to meeting with faculty groups and the Library Committee next. In the mean time, I invite you to come by my office on the first floor of the library, call me at 733-3353, or send me email at and share your thoughts on the library!


Upgrade the public workstations on the first floor of the library.
The library will be upgrading four of the public workstations in this area this semester.

Allow students to use the first floor conference room during daytime hours when it is not in use for other meetings.
Recognizing that students have an increasing need for group study space, the library has changed its policy and will allow students to use this conference room during the day when it is not in use for other meetings.

Shorten the time journals are off the shelf for binding.
Journals are typically off the shelf for six weeks for the binding process. Although we are not able to shorten this time period, the library will provide free interlibrary loan service for any article in a journal issue that is at the bindery.

Don't ever change the policy on 24 hour access to library for students.
The library recognizes that students value 24 hour access, and has no plans to revise this policy.

Strengthen the collection, especially the journal holdings.
We are committed to providing users with access to the information they need, and will be working to leverage our budget as effectively as possible by partnering with the Thomas Cooper Library and other medical libraries in the state and region to expand our collection through group purchases. We also will be asking the School of Medicine faculty to help us make strategic choices about how to balance our print and electronic resources.

Allow students to use the workstations in the computer classroom on the second floor when it is not in use for classes.
It is our hope that upgrading the public workstations on the first floor of the library will provide students with greatly improved computing resources and thereby eliminate the need to open the second floor classroom for general use. We may open up general access to this classroom when the renovation is complete and the classroom is located on the first floor of the library.

Resolve the problem of lack of access to many of the library's full text electronic resources form the Palmetto Richland Memorial Hospital Campus.
The library is engaged in talks with Kay Harwood, Director, PRMH library, and Dr. James McNamee about ways to resolve this problem.

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Online Elsevier Journals Now Available to SOM Patrons

School of Medicine patrons now have online access to the following list of Elsevier journals: The publisher has granted us the right to access titles to which we subscribe in print. The license specifically allows us to register computer address which are accessible from the library, so for now these much-used, high-priced titles are available to most of our VA campus. Please note that most of the titles do not have extensive backfiles.

Please access these titles through our web page by clicking on "E-Journals" then "Individual electronic journals." You may also go directly to and click on "go to journals."

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Electronic Textbooks

The School of Medicine electronic textbook page is now arranged by subject and is accessible under "Electronic Resources" on the library home page (

The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy is now available to all online, in addition to the previously available Merck Manual of Geriatrics.

Most of the electronic textbooks require an MD Consult user ID and password. Once entering MD Consult you must select "Reference Books," then either scroll down to the particular subject/book or do a "Search" on all the books.

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American Chemical Society Journals Online

Through the cooperation of the Thomas Cooper Library Science Section, SOM patrons will be able to access the majority of ACS journals online. You may access the titles through our journal web page. An option to search a set of particular ACS journals by subject is available.

Thomas Cooper Library has provided the bulk of the funds for this endeavor, and we are looking forward to more cooperative agreements that benefit all members of the science community of USC. The twenty-seven titles now available are listed below:

If you have an questions, please contact Karen Rosati at 733-3355.

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New PubMed with New Features

If you are a PubMed user, you have probably noticed a green oval at the top of the screen announcing and providing access to the new version of PubMed. As of March 1, NLM has stated that only the new version will be available. Some of the new features include, but are not limited to:

Limits:Now you can easily limit your search to a particular language, publication type, publication date, etc. You can also limit your retrieval to papers with subjects that are human or animal and specify the gender, age, etc. If you don't want to retrieve papers without an abstract, that limit is also available. This will help improve your search results. Just click on "Limit" under the search bar and then choose the limits you want.

Numbered Search Sets: When you search terms the system will create sets that you can manipulate with Boolean operators. Click on the "History" option and you will see the sets that resulted from your queries. You can then use the pound sign and the number to combine these sets as you see fit. Just remember that your Boolean operators will need to be upper case. This feature replaces the old "Modify Current Query" feature that was clunky to say the least.

Clipboard: Clicking on "Clipboard" will allow users to gather selected citations retrieved from several searches into a holding file that can be used to print, save or order them in one new group. The Clipboard will hold up to 500 citations.

Display: There is a new "brief" display option that gives a single line of information for each citation. This includes the first author's name, a word or two from the title, and the PubMed ID number.

Links:In addition to the link to "Related Articles," the new system has a "Books" link that will take you to the fulltext of book information (only one book so far). This is intended to allow users to explore unfamiliar concepts. There is also a "Link Out" option that will take you to a variety of fulltext information such as the fulltext of journal articles, biological data, sequence centers, etc.

Submitted by Sarah Gable

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WEB IMC: Integrated Medical Curriculum

The Integrated Medical Curriculum, from Gold Standard Media, is a new online resource for medical students, professors, and physicians. Its goal is to make available online everything that students need for the first two years of medical school -- major texts, thousands of images, instant quizzes, and message boards to interact with other students. It is also meant to serve as a reference site for practicing physicians.

Instead of concentrating on one subject, IMC includes information on all of the basic areas of medical education -- human anatomy, microscopic, radiologic and cross-sectional anatomy, essentials of human physiology and immunology, medical ethics, and clinical pharmacology. A search retrieves information from all areas. In addition, IMC has the added feature of creating exams on any of these topics of study and then grading them, so students can test themselves on their knowledge before the real exams come in school.

Physician and other CME opportunities are also available!

Users are required to fill out a brief registration form and choose a username and password.

- Submitted by Lisa Antley-Hearn

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Protect Yourself From Theft

Unfortunately, space limitations prevent the library from providing every student a private and completely secure study area. While our study carrels are great places to study and reflect, they lack doors and locks, and that presents a problem: THEFT. Fortunately, we've only encountered occasional instances of this petty crime, but it has, and does, happen. So please remember to protect your valuables. Do not leave your possessions unattended in your carrel.

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Leisure Reading Collection Success

The library would like to thank all those who donated books to our Leisure Reading Collection! We now have about 160 fiction and general interest books for students, staff, and faculty to enjoy when they need a break from hard work and study. The collection operates on the honor system; you don't have to check the books out, just return them when you are done. They are located next to the New Books in the Reading Room. If you'd like to donate books for the Leisure Reading section, bring them to the Circulation desk.

Thanks again!

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Library Hours and General Information

Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. to midnight
Saturday - 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Sunday - 1 p.m. to midnight

Telephone Number: (803) 733-3344

Fax Number: (803) 733-1509

School of Medicine Library
University of South Carolina
Columbia, SC 29208

Home Page:

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Newsletter Committee

For comments or suggestions regarding the newsletter, please call Karen Rosati at 733-3355.

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Report any problems to Lisa Antley-Hearn,

This page updated on 29 March 2000.
This page copyright 2000, The Board of Trustees of the University of South Carolina.