october workshop logo

October is knocking on your door – and – so our workshops@Hirsh! This is a month to ‘treat’ yourself  by learning new ‘tricks’ to enhance your skills! This month we’ll be introducing you to Zotero,  tools to help you and your patients make decisions, the world of pre-prints, and statistical sources that you need. Don’t be scared – join us!

Workshops will be held on Wednesdays from 12noon-1pm via Zoom.

Registration for workshops is required.  A Zoom link and password will be emailed to you after you register.   Please note that workshops are open to only Tufts-affiliated individuals.

Zotero: the Basics

Date:     Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Time:    12:00pm – 1:00pm

Registration: https://tufts.libcal.com/event/9586489?hs=a

Description: This session will introduce you to Zotero, a free citation management tool. With Zotero, you can:

  • collect references from web sites via your browser of choice
  • drag and drop PDFs to create references
  • generate in-text citations and bibliographies in Word documents

This session is for beginners – no previous experience required!


Tools for Shared Decision Making

Date:     Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Time:    12:00pm – 1:00pm

Registration: https://tufts.libcal.com/event/9591978?hs=a

Description: Shared decision making is a key component of patient-centered health care, where clinicians and patients work together to make decisions, select tests, choose treatments and create care plans. The goal of shared decision making is to balance risks and expected outcomes with patient preferences and values.  This workshop will highlight quality tools that you can equip patients with to enable and encourage these valuable conversations.


The Power of Preprints

Date:     Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Time:    12:00pm – 1:00pm

Registration: https://tufts.libcal.com/event/9620394?hs=a

Description:  Preprints are scholarly manuscripts that have been posted prior to becoming published articles.  With the increased demand to accelerate research, preprints have become a more common part of the publishing process, despite the fact that these drafts have not yet been submitted to a journal nor have they undergone the peer review and editorial process.  This workshop will discuss the benefits and concerns to consider when publishing and utilizing preprints. It will also address where to locate preprints involving health sciences research.


Get That Stat Source: Locating U.S. Health Data

Date:     Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Time:    12:00pm – 1:00pm

Registration: https://tufts.libcal.com/event/9584689?hs=a

Description: This workshop will introduce you to major sources of health data for the United States. Topics will include: data collection stakeholders and methods, tips & tricks for locating health data, and an introduction to the Hirsh Library “Health Data and Statistics” guide.


Our library reference assistant holding up her favorite heart anatomical model

Ariel holding up our heart model, just as she did when she first started!

What a bittersweet announcement! Our beloved part-time library reference assistant, Ariel Flowers, is leaving Hirsh! She has accepted a stellar contract at Brown University, aiding the Divide America Project as Supervising Archivist.

In her short time at Hirsh, she has worked at the desk, getting to know you all. Behind the scenes, she has helped manage our course reserve collection and supervise student assistants. She tells us that she has enjoyed working with the Hirsh team. So, we are going to take her word for it!

Her last day is Friday, September 23rd. Stop by the desk and wish her luck in Providence!


We at Hirsh loved seeing everyone for Afternoon Tea last week. But with the weather getting cooler, and warm drinks gaining popularity, we came up with a craft idea that will… hold you over until pumpkin painting. (Get it?)

Examples of coffee cozies… Can you do better?

On Thursday (9/22) and Friday (9/23), we are going to have a craft setup at the Library Service Desk, where patrons can come up and make Coffee Cozies. Rather than grabbing a sleeve every time you get coffee, you can make a re-usable and totally customizable cozy. Here are some examples.

We hope to see you at the Library Service Desk at noon on Thursday!


Now that classes are in full swing, we’re highlighting some library resources for M1s to help you get in a good headspace so you can set off on the right foot!

Skull model and visualization of ankle and foot for anatomy study

Dissection: ankle and foot superficial dissection © Informa UK Limited 2019. Used under Tufts – Hirsh Health Sciences Library License. Accessed 2 Jan 2019.

Study Tools

Covering content across Step 1 subjects, these question banks are useful self-assessment tools even starting in your first year of medical school. We’re excited about our new subscription to Thieme MedOne, a question bank designed for M1 and M2 students that uses adaptive learning technology to help you identify gaps in knowledge and prepare for Step 1. Through the library, you also have access to LWW Health Library’s self assessment tools. For a list of Step 1 review books on reserve, see our medical board prep research guide.


The PBL Guide is a great place to start! For some LQs, you may need to look beyond the resources encompassed in the guide (for example, physical examination resources!). If you get stuck with a particularly tricky LQ, don’t forget that your PBL group’s librarian is available to help. See the M26 PBL Group Assignments on Canvas for your librarian’s name and email address. We also drop by your group once each semester, so that’s a great time to ask questions as well.


Anatomy will be here before you know it, and we’ve got you covered with a variety of study tools. Browse anatomy models available for 4-hour check out from the Library Service Desk. We have anatomy books and virtual anatomy models available online or for check out from reserve as well.


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Tea logo

Join us on Wednesday, September 14 for the first study break of the semester! Starting at 2:30pm at the Library Service Desk (4th floor, opposite the café).

We’ll have tea, cocoa, and some sweet treats to help you power through the rest of the week. We hope to see you there!

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For some people, autumn is leaf peeping, or warm tea lattes on a rainy day, or maybe pulling out your favorite orange sweaters. But for me, autumn is course reserve season! And today, I’d like to share some info about the Reading List tool in your Canvas courses.

The Reading List feature on Canvas serves one specific purpose: it consolidates your course material. Since library staff have some admin privileges, we can go through courses and see the same materials you do. We, at the library, add required textbooks (and maybe a PDF or two) that we have found in your professor’s syllabus to the Reading List tool. We prepare those materials and add them to a course’s Canvas page. Then, professors can add articles or other resources to the same Reading List. Thus, an entire course’s reading can be accessible all in one place.

The Reading List tool as seen in a Canvas course

Or, if a professor has liked a previous Reading List, they can simply “roll” that list over for their current course.

Everything on a Reading List either has a link directly to the resource, or tells you exactly where to find the physical copy. No need to download or flip through the syllabus every time you need a resource; nor do you have to search for resources yourself. This tool is great for organizing resources and updating the list as the course continues.

And, if you happen to need to, you can always report a resource or link being broken directly on the site. We check these all the time to ensure students and faculty can access their resources without much trouble.

Working closely with faculty about their use of the Reading List has contributed a lot to the program itself. Reading Lists has changed features due to our feedback, so as more people use it we can report more concrete suggestions for improvement. And this includes all of you! We enjoy hearing the ways you all interact with the tool.

We hope to hear how you use the tool soon. And, don’t forget to email us if you have any questions about finding your course material or accessing articles.

And, as an aside, I highly recommend a Darjeeling tea with steamed milk. There is no better time of year to try it. Happy fall!

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Welcome to Tufts – and welcome to the Hirsh Health Sciences Library! We are so glad you’re here!

The Hirsh Library looks forward to supporting you during your time at Tufts. We also want to share some tips to get you started right now:

We wish you a most fabulous Fall semester and hope that you will explore the wealth of resources available to you at Hirsh. Welcome!



September workshop logo


Welcome back! We missed you! Start off this academic year on the right note and enhance your research skills with workshops@Hirsh. This month, we are kicking off our Fall workshop series by presenting three workshops that cover fundamental skills and resources.  If you need a refresher or feel overwhelmed, these workshops are for you. We hope you will join us!

Workshops will be held on Wednesdays from 12noon-1pm via Zoom.

Registration for workshops is required.  A Zoom link and password will be emailed to you after you register.   Please note that workshops are open to only Tufts-affiliated individuals.

September 14 – Approaching the Lit Review

In this workshop, students will learn how to approach the literature review. Topics covered include database selection, devising effective search techniques, limiting articles to relevant study-types, and tools for keeping track of results.

Amy E. LaVertu (she/her) is the librarian liaison to the Friedman School of Nutrition, as well as the departments of Geographic Medicine & Infectious Disease, and Psychiatry at the Tufts Medical Center. 

Register: https://tufts.libcal.com/event/9584669?hs=a 

September 21 – PubMed: An Introduction

This workshop will introduce you to PubMed, the world’s premiere biomedical literature database.  We will review the content of this database, planning and executing a search strategy, narrowing search results, finding full-text, and exporting results to a citation management program.

Allie Tatarian (they/them) is a data librarian, liaison for the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, and former biologist with over 5 years of wet lab experience. Their experience as a researcher sparked an interest in scientific communication, particularly in the ways scientists communicate with each other (and their future selves). Contact them for help with search strategies, data management, or finding molecular biology tools.

Register: https://tufts.libcal.com/event/9620364


September 28 – EndNote: the Basics 

This one-hour session will introduce you to the basics of using the citation management program EndNote.   EndNote allows you to create a library of references, attach and read PDFs, and generate in-text citations and bibliographies in Word documents.  This session is for beginners – no previous experience required!

Paige Scudder (she/her) is Hirsh Library’s Data and Educational Technology Librarian.

Register: https://tufts.libcal.com/event/9591551?hs=a


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In this post, we want to focus on two alternative transit modes that you may (or may not!) be as familiar with: “rails and sails,” aka, Commuter rail and Ferry service.

“Ridin’ the Rails”: the Commuter Rail

MBTA commuter train

By MBTafan2011 – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=24525677

According to the MBTA’s A Rider’s Guide to Planning Ahead:

“Riders can simply show their CharlieCard or CharlieTicket to conductors to ride the Commuter Rail in Zones 1A, 1, and 2 on ALL Commuter Rail lines at no charge.”

The Commuter Rail stops at the following Orange Line stations:

  • Forest Hills > South Station
  • Ruggles > South Station
  • Back Bay > South Station
  • Oak Grove > North Station (with connecting shuttle bus to Government Center)
  • Malden Center > North Station (with connecting shuttle bus to Government Center)

Because the MBTA providing service to Zones 1A, 1, and 2 on ALL Commuter Rail (with your CharlieCard or CharlieTicket), you might also want to do a bit of exploring! Check out which stations in Zones 1A, 1, and 2 are accessible at: https://cdn.mbta.com/sites/default/files/2021-03/2021-03-23-cr-fare-zones.pdf

“Ships Ahoy!:” the Charlestown Ferry

MBTA boat

By Eric Kilby from Somerville, MA, USA – Glory, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=81422537

If you live in Charlestown, there’s another transit option available to you: the Ferry. Ferries have run between the Boston’s North End and Charlestown since colonial times…and they’re still going strong!

The Charlestown Ferry makes frequent trips (about 10 minutes in duration) between the Charlestown Navy Yard and Rowes Wharf near the New England Aquarium.  Fares are $3.70 one way and you can ride the Ferry using your monthly subway or commuter rail pass.  Plus, the harbor views are GORGEOUS!

To learn more about the Charlestown Ferry, visit the MBTA’s Beginner’s Guide to the Ferry.


Well. It’s been a wild few months for the MBTA. We at Hirsh know many of you commute in from other parts of Boston. (Some of our staff certainly do.) So, we decided to create some helpful guides so you can navigate the new school year– or even just navigate to class– with relative ease.

A picture of a map of the different Blue Bike stations in Downtown Boston

As long as the weather’s nice, biking part of your commute might be part of your commute plans.

And today, I’d like to bring your attention to… Blue Bikes! These bikes are all around Boston, and courtesy of the University, you can get a discount on a yearly membership (~60$ a year, whichy is cheaper than a monthly link pass with the MBTA)

Here is a more comprehensive map of the Blue Bikes available around the Greater Metro area. You can see a few of them are within a block from 145 Harrison Ave.

Watch out! The Mass Department of Conservation & Recreation reports any changes to bike paths or detours for the greater metro area. For instance, the Southwest Corridor Bike Path might have rolling repairs during September, so keep your eye on the MassDCR Twitter feed.

And, please: WEAR A HELMET!

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