Information Literacy in the Health Sciences Proficiency Exam

Undergraduate students

HSV 2650: Information Literacy in the Health Sciences is part of the curriculum for several undergraduate degrees. The course is a prerequisite for HSV 3000: Research in Health Services and HSV 4780: U.S. Health Policy. Program faculty recommend students complete this required course. However, students may take the Information Literacy in the Health Sciences Proficiency Exam as an alternative to taking HSV 2650. If you score 75 percent or better on the exam, you do not have to take HSV 2650 and you may enroll in HSV 3000 and HSV 4780. The exam may not be taken to replace a low grade in HSV 2650.

Any registrations for the Health Literacy Exam during Western Michigan University’s Holiday Recess will be made available to students after the break



The exam consists of 50 questions that are true/false and multiple choice. You will have only 90 minutes to complete the exam.  This means you must study all resources carefully prior to taking the exam.

The exam measures your ability to find and evaluate resources, use APA style (currently using the 7th Edition) in your writing and to avoid plagiarism. Since information literacy depends on your ability to use tools to do this, you must use the appropriate tools to complete the exam. In addition to other resources at your disposal, we have created a guide on the WMU library site. Students should complete the WMU Library Information Literacy MicrocourseStudents are strongly encouraged to complete the microcourse before taking the proficiency exam.

The knowledge covered in this exam will be utilized in your subsequent classes, so it is important to know how to use these resources and apply this knowledge.


As of July 1, 2022 the cost to register for the exam is $150. 

Where to find the exam

After paying for the exam, office staff will process your payment and provide access for you to take the exam. This may take up to three business days. Please note WMU is closed from Christmas Day to New Year's Day.

After your registration is processed, the exam will appear in your My Courses section of Elearning. Select "Information Literacy in the Health Sciences Proficiency Exam". You can begin the exam on whatever day you wish and will have 90 minutes to complete the exam when you begin.

UNDERGRADUATE recommended Deadlines

It is recommended that you complete the proficiency exam by the following dates to enroll in HSV 3000 and HSV 4780 for that term.

  • To enroll in fall - complete exam by August 1
  • To enroll in spring - complete exam by December 1
  • To enroll in summer I - complete exam by May 1
  • To enroll in summer II - complete exam by June 1


After you take the test, your score will be emailed to you within 24 hours. At that point, you can determine whether or not you can use the proficiency exam as your prerequisite (a score over 75 percent). If your score is less than 75 percent, you may retake the exam (and again pay the full fee) or enroll in HSV 2650: Information Literacy in the Health Sciences. We highly recommend that you take the course if you have failed the exam three times.  If you have any questions, please email

Register for the exam