gms | German Medical Science

G-I-N Conference 2012

Guidelines International Network

22.08 - 25.08.2012, Berlin

The Usability of an Online Guideline Library – An Eighth Year Evaluation

Meeting Abstract

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  • K. Kren - Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly named American Dietetic Association), Chicago, USA
  • M. Richards - Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly named American Dietetic Association), Chicago, USA
  • P. Ziegler - Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly named American Dietetic Association), Chicago, USA

Guidelines International Network. G-I-N Conference 2012. Berlin, 22.-25.08.2012. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2012. DocP154

doi: 10.3205/12gin266, urn:nbn:de:0183-12gin2660

Published: July 10, 2012

© 2012 Kren et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Background: An online Evidence Analysis Library was launched in 2004 with the objective of providing a library of nutrition-related systematic reviews and evidence-based nutrition practice guidelines to more than 72,000 academy members consisting of dietetics professionals. The library has grown in content over the last eight years, now including over 5100 analyzed articles, over 700 evidence summaries, over 1000 questions/conclusion statements and over 320 recommendations. The online library has also evolved electronically with the addition of features to improve navigation, promote dissemination and ease implementation of guidelines.

Context: An eighth year evaluation was conducted where library users were surveyed in order to obtain information about the usefulness of the library elements and identify the barriers to using the library, finding information, and implementing guidelines.

Description: A random sample of library users from three categories of no/low, medium and high usage was used. Those who were low users were asked to provide motivations for using the library, reasons for not using it more often, and improvement ideas. Those who were medium or high users were asked to provide information about the most useful elements/practitioner tools on the library, if/how they are implementing guidelines, barriers for implementation and dissemination ideas/channels.

Lessons: Results of the survey were compared to a similar usability test conducted in 2007 and provided useful data for improvements in the library electronic features and navigation strategies/organization as well as dissemination/education/implementation strategies for the guidelines.