Data Services at the Health Sciences Library

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You’ve Got Data – We’ve Got Experts!
Whether you’re a beginning researcher or a seasoned expert, chances are if you’re doing research, you’ve got research data. And if you have data, you may reach a point where you need help or advice. That’s where Data Services at the Health Sciences Library (Data @ HSL) can assist you!

Personalized Assistance
Our Data Specialists, Marieke Jones and David Martin can help you with all aspects of working with research data, from:

  • Cleaning your data to ready it for analysis
  • “Wrangling” your data to transform it into its most useful form
  • Analyzing your data to discover trends and insights
  • Creating publication-worthy visualizations to best show your findings

Free Workshops
Looking for free, hands-on training? Watch for our roster of workshops in a wide range of statistical software packages such as R, RMarkdown, python, Jupyter notebooks, Stata, SAS, and SPSS. We’ll be announcing our Winter 2018 topics soon.

Learn More
To request a free consultation with our Data Specialists, just click on the D for Data Services from the HSL home page, or visit our Data Services page at While there, check out links to Workshops and Resources. We look forward to working with you and your data!

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An interview with Dr. Marieke Jones

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The Library is delighted to welcome Dr. Marieke Jones to our Research and Data Services department. We enjoyed getting to know our new colleague through this interview, and we hope that you do, too.

Dr. Marieke Jones, Research Data Specialist

Dr. Marieke Jones, Research Data Specialist













What originally drew you to your field?

During my PhD, I was drafted to teach a recitation section of biostatistics. Within the first semester I fell in love with teaching statistics and programming. It was really gratifying to convince students who self-identified with being bad at math that they could excel in statistics and could successfully learn R programming. Over time, I took on more responsibilities and students, leading lecture sections, developing online learning modules, and teaching advanced statistics and R for adult learners. By the time I finished my PhD I had taught over 2000 students and I knew that teaching data skills is what I wanted to do.

How does your work relate to the Library’s mission/guiding principles?

As the Research Data Specialist, I will be supporting the library’s mission of knowledge sharing to support education and research within the UVa Health System. To accomplish that mission, I will be teaching workshops and consulting one-on-one with researchers to elevate their data skills and research methodology.

What most excites you about your work here?

Libraries have always been in the business of helping people retrieve knowledge. Today, there is oodles of knowledge trapped in data, so to me, the transformation of libraries into a data analysis support center is a logical progression. The UVa Claude Moore Health System Library is at the forefront of this budding trend, and I am thrilled to be part of this innovative library model. I love teaching, data, and learning new things, so this is a great fit for me!

What classes/workshops will you lead in the coming year?

In 2018, we hope to offer our R workshop series including Intro to R, Data Wrangling in R, Essential Stats in R, and Advanced Data Visualization in R more often. With multiple instructors, that should be possible. Over the next few weeks we are looking at these curricula to ensure that the workshops progress from one to another logically and we actively working to standardize the content across all of our instructors.


Where are you from originally/where did you grow up?

I am proudly from New Jersey, the Garden State. I am here to testify that it really is beautiful! The area I grew up in is a region of rolling hills, horse farms, and small towns with colonial history. I went to college in Boston before heading south to Virginia where I attended graduate school at George Mason University in a collaborative program with the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute. My job search after my PhD graduation focused on Charlottesville because I absolutely adore this town and region. The great spine of mountains and undeveloped landscapes all around us here are just the best…and my apartment has a great view!

J.R.R. Tolkien did some amazing world-building when he created Middle Earth. With which race do you most identity, and why?

Dwarves   Elves   Hobbits   Orcs   Ents     Men

I like the idea of being an Ent and taking a long view of the world. Concerns of the other races on Middle Earth matter little to the Ents until the entire world is threatened when they are spurred into action. They are thoughtful and approach difficult decisions with careful attention and logic. Once they make up their minds, they act decisively and are effective at accomplishing their goal (of stopping Saruman and saving the world).

Are you interested in working with Dr. Jones? If so, please email her at

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A Guide to Studying in the Library

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Quiet Study

Quiet study is available in all areas of the library past the doors on the right side of the lobby.  This includes the large reading room, the two rooms with computers, and the smaller reading room.  The Cabell Room, accessible from the west side of the 2nd floor quiet study area, is also a quiet study area.

If a patron is talking in a quiet study area, feel free to notify the Service Desk and desk staff will talk to the patron.

Collaborative (Group) Study

Collaborative study is available in the lobby and in the MILL.  The MILL is located one floor below the lobby.

Questions?  Please contact the Service Desk or Dan Wilson, Assoc. Dir. for Collections & Library Services, at

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Selected eBooks of Interest

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imagesDeadly River : Cholera and Cover-Up in Post-Earthquake Haiti

Ralph R. Frerichs

In October 2010, nine months after the massive earthquake that devastated Haiti, a second disaster began to unfold—soon to become the world’s largest cholera epidemic in modern times. In a country that had never before reported cholera, the epidemic mysteriously and simultaneously appeared in river communities of central Haiti, eventually triggering nearly 800,000 cases and 9,000 deaths. What had caused the first cases of cholera in Haiti in recorded history?

imagesHow to Develop Your Healthcare Career : A Guide to Employability and Professional Development

Lisa E. Taylor

An informative guide to all key aspects of employability for graduating students, educators, managers, and qualified healthcare professionals. Written specifically for health professionals, focusing on their needs and the challenges they face, maximising employability potential, and managing career progression.



51mYFrabmWL._SX387_BO1,204,203,200_Healthy Places, Healthy People, 3rd Edition

Melanie C. Dreher, Lisa E. Skemp, and Susan P. Lehmann

Healthy Places, Healthy People (3rd ed.) provides everything that current and future nurses need to prepare, gather, organize, and analyze basic community information to create a public health strategy. A well-crafted strategy enables public health workers to effectively mobilize citizen action, working with groups and individuals to build capacity for health equity and, ultimately, a healthier future.



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Equipment Lending Service Changes

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We are currently phasing out much of our equipment lending service.  The equipment being phased out (i.e., not being replaced) include laptops, projectors, tablets, video cameras, tripods, and the GoPro camera.  This action is necessary due to the continuing increases in the cost of acquiring core resources (databases and online journals).  As a result, we are forced to cut back on the acquisition of other resources.

Functioning equipment will continue to be available for reservation and checkout at the following link:

Questions?  Please contact Dan Wilson (

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New Artifacts on Display

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Earlier this year, the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library received a generous donation of medical artifacts and books from Robert and Ruth Carroll of Nacogdoches, TX. While practicing family medicine in Texas, Dr. Carroll spent years building an impressive collection of medical antiques and rare books. Dr. and Mrs. Carroll are alumni of the University of Virginia; Dr. Carroll received an MD from the School of Medicine and Mrs. Carroll received a BSN from the School of Nursing, both in 1966. A selection of artifacts from the Carrolls’ donation is currently on display in the main lobby of the Library. Among these materials are items which belonged to Dr. R. Lindsay Robertson (1859-1922), a grandfather of Dr. Carroll. Dr. Robertson received his medical degree from UVA in 1882 and later practiced medicine in Charlottesville.

Artifacts donated by Robert and Ruth Carroll to the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library, 2017.

Artifacts donated by Robert and Ruth Carroll to the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library, 2017.

Several references to R.L. Robertson can be found within University catalogs and other publications held by the Library. From these materials we know that between 1880 and 1882, Robertson attended the University of Virginia and studied chemistry, anatomy, physiology, medical jurisprudence, general medicine, and surgery. He graduated June 30, 1881 with a degree in Chemistry and then, after a further year of study, received a Doctor of Medicine degree from UVA on June 29, 1882.

Prior to his studies at UVA, Robertson was a student at Virginia Military Institute, where he was a member of the school’s Corps of Cadets. After graduating from UVA, Dr. Robertson served as a surgeon in the U.S. Army and spent time in Nebraska and Texas. Later he returned to Charlottesville, VA, to practice medicine. In 1910, Dr. Robertson was elected “City Physician and Health Officer” of Charlottesville, according to an issue of Virginia Medical Semi-Monthly. Dr. Robertson died in 1922 and is buried at Riverview Cemetery in Charlottesville.

On display you can see Dr. Robertson’s personal medicine case, his office sign, and a textbook he used during his time as a student at UVA. Other materials donated by the Carrolls include a unique color-blindness test, several electrotherapy instruments, patent medicine advertisements, and a 1940s era diabetes testing kit. If you have questions about the Library’s medical artifacts collection or the Carroll donation, please contact Historical Collections and Services.

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Guided Meditation @ CMHSL

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Every Tuesday and Thursday through the remainder of the semester, guided meditation sessions will be offered at the Health Sciences Library.  The sessions are held from 1pm to 1:30pm in the Studio, which is located on the first floor of the library.

The goal of meditation is to facilitate physical and mental relaxation allowing mindfulness to become a part of everyday life.  This reduces stress and increases feelings of well being, and compassion for oneself and others. Present moment awareness trains the brain to better focus on the task at hand facilitating clearer decision making.

Betty Mooney, a practicing meditator for over 12 years, will be leading the sessions.  She has attended week long retreats with Thich Nhat Hahn and Tara Brach and has taken courses from Rick Hanson and Jack Kornfield.

The sessions are free.   Beginners to those with previous meditation experience are welcome!

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UVA Libraries Digital Collecting Project

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Screenshot from the Library’s Digital Collecting website.

Recognizing the significance of the events that took place the weekend of August 12, the University of Virginia Libraries are building an archive of materials that are relevant to the “Unite the Right” rally and its aftermath.

An online portal is now available for individuals who want to submit their personal stories to the archive: This could include photos, videos, or just your recollections of where you were on that day and how it has affected you. We hope to preserve a large, diverse range of materials so that future scholars and researchers have access to and are able to tell the stories of this important event in local—and national–history.

If you have any physical materials related to the events of August 12 that you would like to donate, please email the Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library.

The Claude Moore Health Sciences Library is committed to archiving the role of the UVA Health System as a part of the community’s response to the events surrounding the “Unite the Right” rally. If you are interested in adding to the archive materials specifically related to the work of the UVA Health System and its team members, please contact the Health Sciences Library’s Historical Collections and Services Department at

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Data, Analysis, Visualization, and Computing Workshops!

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Searching for free workshops on all things data? Look no further! The fall roster of sessions on data management, analysis, visualization, and computing is complete.

Whether you’re a computing novice or a seasoned programmer, we have something for everyone. There are sessions on popular programming languages, including R and Python, as well as software packages such as SAS and SPSS.

All sessions take place at the Health Sciences Library, and are taught by experts from SOM Research Computing, Public Health Sciences, Bioinformatics Core, Health Sciences Library, and UVA Library’s Research Data Services. All workshops are FREE for UVA students, faculty, and staff, including UVA Health System employees.

Sample workshop titles are listed below, but for a full listing, with class descriptions and registration information, visit:

Introductory Programming and Computing Workshops

Introduction to Python

Introduction to R

Introduction to the Command Line

Introduction to Git and GitHub

Computing at UVA

Overview of UVA Research Computing Resources

Introduction to Ivy

Introduction to Rivanna

Introduction to Cloud Computing with AWS

Research Software

Introduction to SPSS

Introduction to SAS

Introduction to Matlab

Advanced Topics

R Package Development Tools

Automated Image Analysis with ImageJ

Python Web Apps Using the Flask Framework

Want even more workshop topics? See sessions from our partners in Advanced Research Computing Services and University Library Research Data Services at

We hope to see you at a fall data workshop! For more information, contact Andrea Denton, Research and Data Services Manager, at




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New Exhibit: From DNA to Beer

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DNA-Logo-mlnBacteria, yeast, mold, and other microorganisms can be the catalysts for severe illnesses, but they can also be used to produce life-saving medications, not to mention food and beverage items that are consumed every day. A traveling exhibit from the National Library of Medicine, currently on display in the lobby of the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library, explores several major scientific accomplishments related to microorganisms. The exhibit also shows the close relationship that medicine and industry have shared throughout modern history; a relationship that has produced insulin, antibiotics, and antitoxins, not to mention, beer!

On the panels that make up this colorful exhibit, you can read about the rise of penicillin, which earned the nickname “yellow magic” for its life-saving applications during World War II. The exhibit also documents the development and early applications of human growth hormone and describes the techniques invented by Louis Pasteur for studying microorganisms during the beer-making process.

From DNA to Beer, on display in the lobby of the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library.

Also being exhibited in the lobby are artifacts and books from the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library’s Historical Collections. Among these items you can find an 1879 edition of Louis Pasteur’s Studies on Fermentation, a 19th century microscope once owned by a UVA student, and a World War II-era penicillin bottle which was used at the Eighth Evacuation Hospital, a wartime medical unit sponsored by UVA.

From DNA to Beer: Harnessing Nature in Medicine & Industry was developed and produced by the National Library of Medicine and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. The accompanying display of artifacts and books was designed by Eric Drongowski, formerly of Historical Collections & Services. The exhibit will remain up through the end of September 2017.

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