Welcome to the APSU Library! The following information is
intended to assist you in determining
what your information needs are, finding the information that you need, and
evaluating the information you find. Links to various library
services are provided throughout this document. A table at the end
provides links to resources covered here, plus additional helpful information.
Follow each link to explore a resource or service further. Librarians are
available to assist you in the Library; you
can also request assistance via email, chat, or telephone through
the Ask A Librarian service.
The first question you need to ask yourself is
"What types of information do I need for my research
project/paper?" You have access to many types and formats of information
through the APSU Library. You may have done library "research" for other classes you have taken at APSU
or other schools. You probably had to find a certain number of articles, books,
and/or web resources for your paper or project.
Much of your previous research
was probably done in conjunction with writing a paper that was intended to
inform or analyze a particular topic. Professor Thompson requires you to
find Nursing research studies to use in your Utilization Project. NOTE:.
Research studies are most often reported in journal articles. So, how and where do you find
these research studies? The APSU Library is the place to start.
What does APSU Library have available?
A good way to think of the APSU
Library is as an information portal. The Library's website is a bridge to
vast amounts of information both inside and outside APSU. Use the Library's website
at http://library.apsu.edu to find
out what is available. The Library owns or provides
access to a wide variety of materials. Here's a quick overview.
Austin lists items (print or electronic books, videos, selected
government publications, websites and other materials) that are available
both physically in the Library and
items that you have access to through the Library.
Use Find Periodicals to determine if the Library owns a
specific journal title. Be sure to check out the Browse Periodicals by
Subject feature which provides a listing of all Nursing journals accessible
through the APSU Library - check under the Subject: Health Sciences. This
list also lets you know what databases index a particular journal title.
Use a Library-owned database to find specific articles. The Library subscribes to a number
of general and specialized databases
that provide you with bibliographic citations to resources, and in some cases
the full-text of the resource.
pages (arranged by discipline) have been developed so that many of the
information resources for a particular discipline are grouped together in one
place. Now that we have determined that the place to look for information
is the Library, we need to find out how we find the needed information.
You are going to find the information that you
need for Professor Thompson's class in Nursing research journals. These journals are going
to be indexed in various subject databases. Databases index a variety of
information including articles, book chapters, book reviews, letters,
retractions, editorials, and others. Some databases you will use contain
only bibliographic citations, some include an abstract, and others include the
full text of a resource.
Databases are produced by many different vendors
and each vendor has their own search software. Wouldn't it be
wonderful if there were a uniform search platform? The search protocols mentioned
below will help you to search each database
effectively regardless of the vendor.
Many database vendors provide abstracts for many
of the publications they index. Be sure to read them carefully. They
can save you a lot time. An article may seem to be perfect from the title,
but may discuss something irrelevant to your topic. The abstract helps you
determine if the publication is meaningful to your research topic. The
abstract is NO substitute for consulting the complete article or study.
As an APSU student you have access to databases
available through the APSU Library both on campus and off-campus via remote
access. Consult the Remote
Access to APSU Databases guide for assistance.
Although other related databases may be found on the Nursing Resources Subject
Page, Nursing & Allied Health Collections, should provide you with the Nursing
research studies you need for Nursing 4010. You will find more information
about Nursing & Allied Health Collections further below. First, here are
some tips on how to search for information that help in any database.
Searching for information
You will find the following search protocols
useful when searching for any kind of information.
Start with a specific topic. Broaden or narrow it as
necessary. For example you might begin your search by searching for Chronic
Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Depending on your results you may
need to broaden your search to Lung Diseases or narrow it to Pulmonary
operators (AND, OR, NOT) to help construct your search strategy.
Boolean operators assist you in combining search concepts and defining your
searches. The AND operator narrows your search. The OR
operator broadens your search. The NOT operator excludes information
from your search. Examples: Mediterranean Diet AND
Longevity would retrieve information about the Mediterranean diet
and length of life. Physical Endurance OR Exercise Tolerance would
retrieve information about either topic. Anemia NOT aplastic would
exclude information about aplastic anemia, but include information
about other forms of anemia
Limit by format and material type when searching databases.
Many databases allow you limit your searches by material type and format such as journal articles, refereed publications, research, literature
reviews, and many others. Check in each database you use to see how to
limit by publication type and format.
Use the references at the end of an article or book chapter
to find other resources. The references used by someone else in their
research are extremely valuable to you. By consulting those resources,
you may find information that you may not have know about and that
will improve your research.
Check subject terms assigned to an article to see if there
are more accurate or specific terms for your topic. Whenever you search
a catalog or database, always look at the subject terms that have been
assigned to the resource. You may find a better or more accurate
subject term for your topic and improve your research.
If you are having trouble finding information about your topic,
think of other terms to describe your topic. Example: another way
to describe stomach stapling is gastric bypass.
If the database that you are searching uses a controlled
vocabulary or thesaurus, use it! Your search will be much more
accurate than if you use keywords. By using the thesaurus in a
database, you are using the language used by the indexers and abstractors.
Note: For new concepts or buzz words, you may have to use keyword searching
because the new terms may not have made it into the controlled vocabulary of
the discipline. Also, if you are having no luck using the thesaurus in
particular database, you may want to perform a keyword search and check the
subject headings or descriptors used for a relevant article.
Nursing & Allied Health Collections
consists of the following four databases.
Nursing & Allied Health Collection: Comprehensive is designed for nursing and allied health
professionals, students, educators and researchers. This database provides full text for nearly 400 journals covering the areas of nursing, biomedicine, health sciences, consumer health and allied health disciplines. Nearly all full text titles included in Nursing & Allied Health: Comprehensive Edition are indexed in CINAHL.
CINAHL is the authoritative resource for nursing and allied health professionals, students, educators and researchers. This database provides indexing for over 1,700 current nursing and allied health journals and publications dating back to 1982, totaling over 961,000 records.
Clinical Pharmacology contains current, concise and clinically-relevant drug monographs for all U.S. prescription drugs, hard-to-find herbal and nutritional supplements, over-the-counter products and new and investigational drugs. Clinical Pharmacology is made up of Drug Monograph and Patient Education Records.
Pre-CINAHL, a companion database to CINAHL, is intended to provide current awareness of new journal articles, and includes a rotating file of limited bibliographic information (no subject searching), which are available to researchers only for the time when these articles are being assigned additional indexing.
Select the database(s) to search. Nursing & Allied Health Collection:Comprehensive and
CINAHL are selected by default
Nursing & Allied Health Collections defaults to the Basic Search, but experienced searchers will prefer the Advanced Search capabilities. Like Google, the Basic Search has a single text entry box and performs a keyword search on the term(s) entered. With the Advanced Search, there are 3 search entry text boxes, user selectable fields to search on, and the ability to perform Boolean searches.
The Basic Search and Advanced Search have different limiting options depending on which database(s) are
selected. With the Basic Search, only the limiters that are common to the selected databases are
presented. The Advanced Search presents the limiting options for all selected databases.
For more information on searching the Nursing & Allied Health Collections databases click the Search Tips
link within the database.
Does the APSU Library have the
periodical I need?
The easiest way to determine if
the APSU Library has the journal you need is to use the Find Periodicals link
found under Austin Catalog on the Library Website. If you have identified an article in a periodical
database, be sure to use the Search for full text link found under the
article citation. This takes you to the Article Linker software which
directs you to a periodical that is accessible electronically or available
physically in print. Article Linker also lets you know if the periodical
is not available locally, in which case you can request it through Interlibrary
Loan - see below.
Evaluation of Information
Material that you find in
has been selected for the APSU Library by librarians and subject faculty using
formal selection criteria and professional reviews. Resources indexed in
subject databases ( Nursing & Allied Health Collections, Health & Wellness, PsycINFO, and others) have met certain
criteria set forth by the database publishers, including subjects covered,
publication type, and others. You will have to evaluate this
information further to determine if it is appropriate for your research purposes.
There are various criteria to assist you in evaluating materials for your
research project. Here
are some links that will help you to evaluate journal articles and books.
to Evaluate Journal Articles
to Evaluate Books
Most of you
are aware that there is some very good information, some very bad information
and much in between available on the Internet. How do you tell which is
which? As with all information that you examine for your research, you
must evaluate its usefulness and relevance to your particular project. You
must ask yourself questions such as who is responsible for this website?
Are they an expert in the field? Is this information relevant to my
research? Is sponsor of this website a commercial
entity or an educational institution or an organization or what? Is the
information current? Can the information be verified in other
sources? Here are a several links that will help you to evaluate
to Evaluate a Web Page
Criteria for Evaluating Web Pages
You may need some resources for your project that
the Library does not own. If that is the case, you need to use the
Library's interlibrary loan service (ILL). We can borrow materials that you
other libraries worldwide. Just fill out the online ILL
form and submit it electronically. Some of you may request dissertations or
theses that you find in the databases mentioned above. Many times these
documents are only available from the institution which granted the degree and
can be hard to borrow through ILL. That said, please don't hesitate to
submit the request. We may be able to borrow it. The most important
thing to remember about ILL is to plan ahead! While we have the
technology to receive articles via the internet, we still use regular (snail)
mail for books and other resources. Not all libraries that we borrow from
have the technology to send articles via the internet and still use regular
mail. Plan ahead.
Once you select the sources to
use in your research project/paper, you will need to put them in some type of
order and format. Professor Thompson will tell you which style she wants you
to use for this class. The Library has a guide that will help with style, Online
There is help
available to you in a variety of ways. The Ask
A Librarian service provides help via email, chat or via telephone. Please don't spend hours looking for
something and get frustrated. Ask for help. That's why the Library