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Crossing the Brooklyn Bridge: Weill Cornell Medical Librarians Partner with the Brooklyn Public Library: Course Content: Videos and Exercises

Course Content

Below are two videos on how to conduct reference interviews with health information consumers and techniques for improving health literacy.  Please watch each video and review the accompanying worksheet and resources.


After you've watched the videos and reviewed the materials, please explore the consumer health information and COVID-19 resources on the following pages. Finally, complete the course completion survey on the final page.



Video #1: A Health Consumer Walks Into a Library: Techniques for Handling the Reference Interview for Health and Medical Information

Video #2: Techniques for Improving Health Literacy

Worksheet: Reference Interview

After watching Video #1, did you think about how you would engage with health information consumers?


To further your knowledge about working with consumers, please download and complete the Reference Interview worksheet.


In the in-person training, we broke into small discussion groups to discuss the scenarios and questions in the worksheet. If you're taking this training with colleagues, we encourage you to discuss! if not, think about how you might handle the scenario in the worksheet.


Health Literacy Resources

The Gunning Fog Index

The Gunning Fog Index site provides an Automatic Readability Calculator that allows you to enter a writing sample and  determine its reading level to help ensure it's readable by your audience.


Centers for Disease Control (CDC) "Simply Put" guide

A guide for creating easy-to-understand materials.


Plain Language Medical Dictionary

The Plain Language Medical Dictionary widget is a project of the University of Michigan Taubman Health Sciences Library as part of the Michigan Health Literacy Awareness project.


The Patient Education Materials Assessment Tool (PEMAT) and User’s Guide

A systematic method to evaluate and compare the understandability and actionability of patient education materials. It is designed as a guide to help determine whether patients will be able to understand and act on information.

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