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NUR 102: Foundations of Nursing Practice I Course Guide

Coming Attractions...

Services, resources, and locations are all subject to change, particularly during academic year breaks. What's new at Fogler Library.

Use Databases to Find Citations to Journal Articles

  • CINAHL is the most useful database for this and many other nursing classes. For some paper topics, you might also use MEDLINE or PubMed, PsycINFO, or other databases.
  • Indexes and databases are designed for use worldwide, so they refer to items we don't own.
  • Often the full text of articles is included in databases. Sometimes you will need to retrieve articles online using links in the URSUS catalog, and occasionally you will need to use print journals at the library.
  • Different companies produce different interfaces to CINAHL. Consequently, the database may look very different at other libraries, or even from one year to the next.
  • Planning to do library research off campus?
    • Activate your library card at the Fogler Library circulation desk so you can use library resources off campus. At the start of every semester, make sure your card is activated.
    • Computer problems? See Remote Access Troubleshooting.

Searching Databases

See the CINAHL guide (or other database guides) for detailed instructions.

Before you search:

  • Document your research process--list the databases you used, the search terms you tried, etc.
  • Click Advanced Search for the most search options.
  • Running out of time? Save your search strategy (and maybe some results).
  1. Identify individual concepts within your topic.
  2. Search for each concept separately, using the Exploded official subject headings.
  3. Combine the subject headings.
  4. Apply limits.
  5. Evaluate your results BEFORE you print them--read the abstract, skim full text, look at the subject headings.
Combining subject headings
Use AND for more specific results
Socialization AND Students, Nursing
  AND narrows a search, 
      finding only results containing both terms.
Use OR to broaden a search with related terms
Students, Nursing OR Education, Nursing
  OR expands a search, finding 
      results containing either or both terms.
  • Frequently used CINAHL limits: Published Date, English Language, Peer Reviewed, Research Article, USA (in Geographic Subset).
  • MEDLINE and PsycINFO lack a "research" limit. The Human limit is very important in these 2 databases.

Finding Journal Articles at Fogler Library...and Beyond

See Finding Items at Fogler Library and Getting Items from Other Libraries.


  • Don't submit an interlibrary loan ("ILL") request before your card has been activated. (The request might be cancelled.)
  • Most ILL articles are free, but sometimes the other library charges delivery and copying fees for ILL. On the interlibrary loan request form, indicate the maximum cost you are willing to pay in case there is a charge.
  • ILL paper copies are sent to Fogler Library.
  • If you are going to visit another library, call before you travel. Check hours, policies, copying fees, and whether the issue you need is available.


Nancy Curtis, 581-1679
Science & Engineering Center, 581-1691
Reference Desk, 581-1673
Ask A Librarian

Created by: Nancy Curtis | Revised: 02/19/2014
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The University of Maine
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