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Nursing 561

New to Library Research?

Hello, and welcome to the Foley Library at Gonzaga! If you are brand new to finding and accessing research using library databases (or just need a refresher), please take a look at the Library Orientation for the School of Health Sciences, or watch the video below. This orientation will get you started in navigating the library website, accessing journal articles and books, and using library services (such as Interlibrary Loan and making reference appointments). 

Online Nursing Library Orientation


  Use the Nursing Resources guide if you know what kind of evidence you need, but aren't sure where to find it. 

  Full Text can be accessed by searching for articles in the library catalog. If you are using another database, look for a link to Gonzaga Libraries; for example, in PubMed there is a button that says, "Get it @ GU"

  If we don't have access to the full-textyou can request it via Interlibrary Loan. Articles generally take 1-3 working days to receive.

  You can request books from Gonzaga or from our Partner Libraries (Summit) by searching the Library catalog. Books being shipped from partner libraries generally take 7-10 days to receive.

  The Nursing Programs at Gonzaga utilize APA Style formatting. The Library highly recommends that graduate / doctoral students use a citation manager; Zotero is a free program that is supported by the Foley Library.

For this assignment, you will choose a broad topic (as provided by your instructor). The PICOT questions provided are intentionally very vague, and it is recommended that you narrow your focus on a particular aspect of the topic. You don't want to end up with 2,000 results to comb through! Instead, work on narrowing this down to a manageable number.

You will also need to limit your results to just articles from the past 5 years. You can do this by using the date of publication filter, found on the left side of your search screen.

Quick Tips

As you begin your assignment, here are a few other tips to keep in mind: 

  • Remember that PICOT is focused on a clinical intervention; often people try to make PICOT fit a non-clinical intervention, but that will make the assignment more confusing. Make sure you question is really about a clinical intervention. 
  • Use Boolean Operators to connect your search terms. Use "OR" to use synonyms (if you have multiple search terms that mean the same thing), and use "AND" to connect each must-have concept. See our guide for more info about constructing a search using boolean operators.
  • If you are using “OR” in your search (to find synonyms), make sure you use a separate search line for each concept. Alternatively, you can clump together like-concepts using parenthesis. For example:
    (lumbar pain OR low back pain)  AND  exercise  AND  (spinal manipulation OR "manual therapy" OR chiropractic)  
  • Avoid solely using acronyms/abbreviations. Instead, spell out the acronym; you can combine the two terms with the boolean operator "OR." For example, your search for ICU would be: ICU OR Intensive Care Unit. Just be careful, as sometimes acronyms can bring up irrelevant results.
  • Do not limit your search to full-text; any article that you can’t get immediate access to, you can request via Interlibrary Loan (which generally takes 1-3 days)
  • Avoid articles that are just general literature reviews.

Too few results?

  • Consider using synonyms for your search terms.

Too many results? 

  • Use filters to narrow down your results. 
  • Use controlled vocabulary like MeSH or CINAHL Headings. Controlled Vocabulary / Subject Headings vary from database to database. There are a few videos that show how to use subject headings in the PubMed and CINAHL, but feel free to reach out to me if you have additional questions on how to use subject headings in a particular database. 
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