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Research & Publishing in Health Sciences: Advanced Searching
Learn about library resources, selecting journals, predatory publishing, and EndNote.
Collection of databases containing independent evidence to inform healthcare decision-making. Includes full-text PDF versions of the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews for both complete reviews and protocols.
Provides abstracts to articles in medicine, nursing, dentistry, veterinary medicine, allied health, and the pre-clinical sciences. Includes biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online books. Also includes links to articles available through UK Libraries' subscriptions.
Scopus is an abstracting and citation database of peer-reviewed literature that contains over 22,000 titles from more than 5,000 publishers around the world, covering the fields of science, technology, medicine, social sciences, and arts & humanities. Scopus is a citation index which helps in determining the impact of articles and journals by highlighting which titles are most cited within a field.
Attempt to bring together 'evidence-based' healthcare resources available on the Internet. It contains nearly 29,000 links from approximately 75 sources. The citations are obtained from peer-reviewed journals and 'eTextbooks.'
Boolean operators form the basis of database logic.
They connect keywords and subject headings together to narrow or broaden a search.
The three basic boolean operators are: AND, OR, NOT
AND tells a database that ALL search terms must be present in the results. Therefore, it narrows your results. An example would be artificial intelligence AND medicine AND ethics.
Be aware that in some databases and search engines the AND is implied. Google Scholar automatically ANDs your search terms.
OR connects two or more similar concepts, usually synonyms, and therefore broadens your search results. OR tells a database that ANY of your search terms can be present in your search results.
So if you were to search artificial intelligence OR medicine OR ethics, you would receive results on just artificial intelligence, medicine, or ethics. You may also receive results that are about all three concepts.
exclude words from your search
narrow your search because it tells a database to ignore a concept
are words used in natural language and describe your topic.
are a predefined controlled vocabulary. They are used to describe individual content in a database.
are more flexible and can be combined together in many ways.
are less flexible to search by; you must know the exact term used to describe your topic.
Databases look for keywords anywhere in the record, unlike subject terms.
Subject headings only appear in subject heading or descriptor fields. In theory, if you find the exact Subject Heading that describes your topic, everything cataloged in the database should appear when searching that term.
Keywords may yield too many or too few results.
If there are too many results, you can use subheadings to focus your search.
Keywords may yield many irrelevant results.
Subject Heading results usually are relevant to the search topic.
MeSH is the acronym for "Medical Subject Headings." MeSH is the authority list of the vocabulary terms used for subject analysis of biomedical literature at NLM. The MeSH controlled vocabulary is a distinctive feature of MEDLINE. It imposes uniformity and consistency to the indexing of biomedical literature.
MeSH clarifies and broadens. You can search for MeSH terms using the main search box on PubMed. Select MeSH from the drop down.
The MeSH database always provides a definition of the term. When searching for a MeSH term, you should always ensure that the MeSH definition of the term aligns with your search strategy. In addition, you can view any subject headings associated with the MeSH term. This is the entry in the MeSH database for the term Diabetes Insipidus.
Once you find the correct term in MeSH, you can select that term by using the search box found at the right side of the page. Once you have chosen the term you wish to search, click add to search builder to place the term in the Search Builder box. Click the Search PubMed button when you are ready to search.