Weekly Feature

2018-11-07 / Education

UB develops data science librarian training program

University at Buffalo researchers in several disciplines are collaborating to develop a new data science training curriculum for library and information science graduate students and practicing health science librarians.

The $25,000 grant from the National Library of Medicine of the National Institutes of Health has been awarded to researchers in the Department of Biomedical Informatics in the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and the Department of Library and Information Studies in the Graduate School of Education.

The new grant is a supplement to a $2.5 million grant that the NLM awarded in 2017 to UB researchers led by Peter Elkin, professor and chair of the Department of Biomedical Informatics. That grant supports doctoral- and postdoctoral-level training for research careers in biomedical informatics and data science.

The new data science librarian program will focus on preparing people to work in academic, hospital, health-related and public libraries, as well as libraries focused on specific subjects.

Students and librarians who complete the program will achieve data science micro-credentials, which are skill sets that are more narrowly focused, more flexible and quicker to achieve than traditional degrees or certificate programs.

“Our goal is to develop micro-credentials that will provide library and information studies graduate students and practicing health science librarians with the knowledge, skills and attributes they need in order to successfully compete for data science positions,” said Diane G. Schwartz, research associate professor of biomedical informatics and co-investigator on the grant with Ying Sun, associate professor in the Department of Library and Information Studies.

The grant is focused on developing a training program that will provide practitioners with specific skills that will allow them to assist health care professionals and biomedical scientists in making sense of the deluge of data in biomedical sciences.

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