Available Until 8/9/2023

INLS 515 Consumer Health Information*

For more information or to schedule this course, please contact Terri Ottosen, AHIP at ottosen@email.unc.edu . 

This class is a semester-long exploration of consumer health for the graduate students in the School of Information and Library Science at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Each session of the class will cover an aspect of the field of consumer health information. Topics include finding and evaluating online health information resources, health literacy, plain language, providing consumer health information services in public and academic libraries, consumer health information in the media, consumer health information technology, complementary and integrative health resources, outreach and community engagement, evidence based medicine and consumer health information, electronic health records, consumer and patient empowerment, and patient portals. 

Resource URLhttps://sakai.unc.edu/portal/site/consumerhealth 

Learning Objectives 

Participants will be able to:

1) Find and evaluate online health information resources

2) Provide consumer health information services to the public in a confident and knowledgeable manner

3) Define and explain the importance of health literacy from the consumer and the provider perspective, as well as the impact of low health literacy on the individual and the health care system

4) Review a patient education document to improve patient understanding and use plain language


  • Introduction to Consumer Health Information
  • Finding and Evaluating Online Resources
  • Consumer Health Information Literacy
  • Consumer Health Information in North Carolina and Beyond
  • CHI in the media: print, broadcasting, internet, etc.
  • Discussion CHI in the media and medical errors
  • Presentations
  • Consumer Health Information Technology – CH IT
  • Complementary and Integrative Medicine
  • Student selected websites
  • Volunteers present selected websites to the class, discussion
  • Outreach, Elements of a good outreach funding proposal, NNLM, NLM, Hiring
  • Outreach Proposal
  • Implementing health literacy practices in large health system, importance of engaging patients and families, work beyond patient education
  • Evidence Based Medicine and CHI
  • Consumer Health Informatics and Electronic Health Records
  • CHI user groups: older adults
  • CHI user groups: Adolescents
  • Student-selected organization
  • Presentations
  • Consumer/Patient Empowerment and Technology
  • Support groups as Sources of Health Information
  • Final Projects
  • Final paper/project presentations
  • Wrap-up discussion – Q & A (any unfinished presentations)
  • Consumer Health Information: What’s Next? Advances in mobile technologies? Robotics? Human Computer Interactions?

MLA CE Credits: 12