Falk Library December and Winter Recess Hours

HSLS Winter Recess HoursMonday, December 14, 2020–Friday, December 18, 2020: Full virtual service with support for book pickup and drop off from 7 a.m.–6 p.m. Falk Library printing and study spaces CLOSED.

Saturday, December 19, 2020–Sunday, January 3, 2021: CLOSED. Please report any issues with hsls.pitt.edu or online resources to medlibq@pitt.edu. Questions and requests for other services sent over the winter recess break will be addressed when the library re-opens on January 4.

Monday, January 4, 2021–Friday, January 8, 2021: Full virtual service with support for book pickup and drop off from 7 a.m.–6 p.m. Falk Library printing and study spaces CLOSED. Continue reading

Recently Released: Final NIH Policy for Data Management and Sharing

In October 2020, the NIH released their Final Policy for Data Management and Sharing which requires NIH-funded researchers to proactively plan for how scientific data will be preserved and shared through submission of a Data Management and Sharing Plan.

Additional supplementary information released in concert with the policy addresses:

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Understanding the Principles of Fair Use

Fair use is an integral part of copyright law, as it allows for the reuse of copyrighted works without obtaining permission from the copyright holder. Successful examples of fair use include instances where the use is transformative in nature, such as parody, critique, commentary, or for teaching and education. Fair use could also be using a quote in an article to support an idea in a paper or using an image for a class presentation.

Making a decision about what constitutes fair use is not always as straightforward as it seems. There are four principles that the courts use to determine fair use, and fair use is never actually determined until a case is brought to court. The following principles should be considered holistically. If the intended use complies with only one principle, careful consideration should be taken about seeking copyright permission instead.

The first fair use principle is the purpose and character of the use. Non-profit, educational use is usually favored by fair use, while commercial reuse tends to be more difficult to justify. Continue reading

Quickly Share, Gain Feedback, and Improve Your Papers with Research Square

The HSLS Update has published numerous articles about preprints over the years. Here we introduce another iteration of the preprint movementResearch Square, a multidisciplinary platform that helps researchers share their work early, gather feedback, and improve their manuscripts prior to (or in parallel with) journal submission.

So what differentiates Research Square from other preprint servers? The focus is on “added value” features such as:

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Zotero: Because Who Doesn’t Like Free Things?

Go to Why ZoteroA citation manager is a tool that helps you store, organize, and cite references. Proprietary examples include Elsevier’s Mendeley and Clarivate’s EndNote. Zotero, on the other hand, is an open-source citation manager developed by a nonprofit organization. It is free to download Zotero and use it for up to 300 MB of storage. In addition to downloading Zotero for your desktop, you can also create a free online account and sync it with your desktop library so that you can access it from anywhere via the web. An online account also enables you to collaborate with others using shared group libraries. Continue reading

HSLS Staff News

The HSLS Staff News section includes recent HSLS presentations, publications, staff changes, staff promotions, degrees earned, etc.

Names in bold are HSLS-affiliated


Melissa Ratajeski, Coordinator of Data Services, was appointed to the Medical Library Association’s jury for the Eugene Garfield Research Fellowship for a one-year term.


K.S. Hsiung, J.B. Colditz, E.A. McGuier, G.E. Switzer, H.M. VonVille, Public Health, Research and Instruction Librarian, B.L. Folb, Public Health Informationist (emeritus), et al., published “Measures of Organizational Culture and Climate in Primary Care: A Systematic Review” in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, November 2, 2020.

L.G. Kahn, K.G. Harley, E.L. Siegel, Y. Zhu, P. Factor-Litvak, C.A. Porucznik, M. Klein-Fedyshin, Research and Clinical Instruction Librarian, et al., published “Persistent Organic Pollutants and Couple Fecundability: A Systematic Review” in Human Reproduction Update, November 4, 2020. Continue reading

Classes for December 2020

All HSLS classes are now offered online through Zoom. Information on how to connect will be sent to registrants.

Advanced PubMed, Wednesday, December 2, 9–10 a.m.

Introduction to Research Data Management, Friday, December 4, 3–4 p.m.

Graphic Design with Canva, Monday, December 7, 10–11 a.m.

File Naming Best Practices, Tuesday, December 8, 2–3 p.m.

GEO Data Mining & Pathway Enrichment Analysis w/ Open Access Tools, Wednesday, December 9, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.

Painless PubMed, Thursday, December 10, 10–11 a.m.

Crafting a Data Management Plan, Thursday, December 10, 12–1 p.m.

Introduction to Tableau for Data Visualization, Friday, December 11, 11 a.m.–12:30 p.m.

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