Library Services

Information and circulation services are now available at one desk in the Briscoe Library

Librarians and library assistants now provide services from the one-stop service desk on the main floor of the Briscoe Library. 

On July 29, the library’s familiar Information Desk was dismantled and removed.  This desk, a work of art built with several types of wood, was designed for the Briscoe Library when it opened in 1983.  Changes in library use have made it possible to consolidate circulation, information, reference, and research services to one service point located at the Circulation Desk at the main entrance to the library.

One motivation for removing the Information Desk is the increased demand for electricity.  The former location of the Information Desk has abundant electrical and data connections and it will be transformed into a comfortable  and convenient hub for using laptops and other mobile devices.

Another reason to move to a single service point is consolidation of services to one central location.  The number of transactions that take place at the Information Desk decreased  in recent years, thus allowing the library to plan for services to be offered at one central location.  When the Briscoe Library opened its doors, library users were dependent on librarians to obtain reference assistance and to compile citations to articles in their research topics.  In recent years, Web  access to MEDLINE and other databases evolved, journals and books became available in electronic format, and searching tools such as PubMed and Google made it possible to look up information and obtain online texts without coming into a library.  Librarians spend a good part of their day teaching people how to use resources to effectively find and organize information on their own.  With the removal of the Information Desk, librarians will be available on call, and they will monitor telephone, email and instant messages while working from their offices.

To contact an Information Services librarian, stop by the Circulation Desk, call 567-2450, schedule a consultation appointment, or send an email to

Jonquil Feldman
Director of Briscoe Library Services

Information outreach: Laredo Regional Campus Library provides services to seniors

Laredo Seniors

Peg Seger, head of outreach services in the Briscoe Library, speaks to a group of seniors at the Laredo Regional Campus Library about MedlinePlus and other consumer health information resources.

On  January 24 and 25,  Erika Silva, library assistant at the Laredo Regional Campus Library, Peg Seger, head of outreach services at the Briscoe Library, and Rodney Webb, Texas A&M International University librarian presented an overview of library resources and services to members of the Laredo seniors community.  Included in the program was a presentation on consumer health information resources available through the National Library of Medicine.  Attendees were treated to pens, notepads, and a variety of print materials about MedlinePlus and NIHSenior Health.

Journal cancellation list: We are still interested in receiving your input

In the May issue of the newsletter, we posted a list of possible journal and database cancellations for 2012.  If you have not reviewed the list and sent comments, please take the time to do so.  Comments can be sent to John Weed, Head of Collection Resources,

Library services for alumni: help us spread the word

As we end another academic year, the UT Health Science Center librarians and staff want to congratulate the new graduates and to wish them good luck in their future endeavors. We also want to remind everyone that Health Science Center alumni may continue to use many library resources after graduation.

Alumni must register in person at the Briscoe Library Circulation Desk or at the Ramirez or Laredo Regional Campus Libraries. There is no cost to register but registration must be renewed annually.  Alumni may check out up to three items at a time, generally for up to two weeks, and items may be renewed online up to two times.

Due to licensing agreements and contracts, remote or off-campus access to electronic resources is available only to currently employed faculty and staff, and currently enrolled students. Alumni with professional hospital affiliations should contact their hospital librarians, systems or education staff for details on access to databases, journals or books for staff use.

On-site access to Health Science Center library databases and to print and online resources is available to all. Free computers are provided in the libraries for access to the Internet and other electronic resources for health-related research.  Alumni receive a Patron ID to use library computers and can add unlimited minutes per day to their Patron account.

The Libraries offer reference services and classes at no charge. Fee-based literature search services by our expert librarians may be requested, and practicing health professionals in South Texas may request articles for a fee through the ILLiad system.

For more information about services to Health Science Center Alumni, contact us at

Jonquil D. Feldman
Director of Briscoe Library Services

Briscoe Library Information Commons

Making way for improvements at the Briscoe Library

Shifting books on the 4th floor of the Briscoe Library

Members of the library staff have been shifting books and print journals on the 4th floor of the Briscoe Library to make room for all of the books that remain on the 5th floor.

Faculty and staff of the newly constructed Office of Undergraduate Medical Education moved into their new offices on the 5th floor of the Briscoe Library in May.  Further changes are planned for this floor in order to provide improved study and collaboration spaces for students.

In the very near future, new carpeting and ceiling fixtures will be installed  on the 5th floor and all furniture on the floor will be replaced with new and updated furniture.  Group study rooms will be equipped with Mediascape tables and flat screen monitors to support collaborative work.  New study carrels, lounge seating, and study booths will also be added to update and improve the study environment.

In order to make as much room as possible for the new 5th floor study area, library staff have been busy in June consolidating the book and journal collection on the 4th floor, so that the few remaining books on the 5th floor can be moved to the 4th floor.  In addition to added space for study furniture, the book move will result in the circulating collection of print books and journals all being housed on one floor of the library.

Stay tuned for more details on the progress of this project in the coming months.

Rajia Tobia, Executive Director of Libraries

New Information Services hours at the Briscoe Library

Librarians are available to provide assistance with reference questions, with the library’s print and electronic collections, and with one-on-one assistance in searching databases and bibliographic management programs such as EndNote and RefWorks.

At the Briscoe Library, librarians are now on-call Monday through Friday, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. During these hours, we can be reached in person, by telephone at 210-567-2450, through email at or via Instant Messaging.

Consultation appointments are also available for your in-depth questions.  We look forward to assisting you with your information needs.

Jonquil Feldman

Director of Briscoe Library and Outreach Services

P. I. Nixon Medical Historical Library and University Archives closed for appraisal

Interior photograph of the Nixon LibraryThe P. I. Nixon Medical Historical Library and the University Archives will be closed to the public and university personnel on March 7 and March 8 from 8:00 am – 6:00 pm.    The Howe Conference Room, which houses part of the rare books collection, will also be closed during that time.

The university’s collection of rare books will be appraised during those two days.  Anyone needing to view rare books or archival items should schedule a different date to do so.

For more information on the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library, contact Lisa Matye Finnie, Special Collections Librarian, at or 210-567-2406.

Redesigned library website debuts over the holidays

The UT Health Science Center Libraries debuted a redesigned website over the holidays.  The new website went live on Sunday, December 25, 2011.  The new website incorporates a number of ideas developed through usability testing with students, faculty and staff:

  • A new Library Search box is featured in the center of the Libraries’ main webpage.  One tab in that search box allows you to perform a library catalog keyword search from the home page; another will allow you to enter a PubMed Identifier (PMID) for an article to immediately check for online access to that article.  Other tabs allow you to search the database list, e journal list, or e-book list by title.
  • “Resources For…” is a new set of portal pages designed for the unique needs of main groups of library users: custom collections of resources for students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the community.
  • The “I Need To…” pages are guides to some of the most common tasks that library users need to perform: researching a topic, finding a specific article or book, finding study space or using computers, and more.

That is  just the beginning — we have incorporated many improvements throughout this new website and hope it will meet the needs of our campus community.  You can still find a link to each of the UT Health Science Center Libraries – Briscoe, Ramirez, Laredo, P.I. Nixon Medical Historical, and the Jesse H. Jones at TRP — on the new home page.  We are eager to hear your feedback and suggestions so we can continue to develop and improve our website going forward.  Let us know what you think!  Comments can be sent to

Luke Rosenberger, Director for Library Technology and Historical Collections


The Laredo Regional Campus Library will have new hours beginning September 1

Monday – Friday: 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Saturday: closed

Sunday: closed


Updates to off-campus access and ILLiad logins

Starting Monday, June 11th the library website will offer a simpler, consolidated login page to access electronic resources from off-campus as well as to place an interlibrary loan request through the ILLiad system.  The changes are being made to simplify and improve one of the most frequently used pages on the library’s website.

UT Health Science Center faculty, staff and students will select the first option and be instructed to use their Health Science Center domain authentication (email username/password). This change will eliminate the need to remember another username/password.  It will also allow requests for interlibrary loan of articles and books to be processed immediately without the previous wait of 24 hours for registration processing.

The second option (Clinical Faculty & All Other Users) is only for users who do not have a Health Science Center domain account.  Users must first register with the library in order to use this login method.  Login using this method uses your library ID and corresponding PIN.  For all clinical and adjunct faculty members the library ID will be your HSC badge number.

This update to the library logins saves UT Health Science Center faculty, staff and students from creating a separate library account to access materials from off campus or to login to our interlibrary loan service, ILLiad.  Please note that all users will still need to be registered with the library to check out materials.

If you have any questions about the upcoming changes, please feel free to contact Eric Willman, Systems Librarian: