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NR 255: Professional Nursing Practice I

CINAHL search tips

  • Start with just one or two keywords, then add limiters and additional keywords (if needed)
    • Usually it's best not to include search words like "nursing" or "patient." CINAHL is a nursing database, so just about everything is about nursing and patient care!
  • Limiters (click "show more" under the date range limiter bar to the left of your results list):
    • Published date: adjust range to limit to past 5 years
    • English language (checkbox)
    • Research article (checkbox)
      • This limiter does not necessarily limit to research study articles, but it does eliminate content that is not research at all (newsletters, book reviews, etc.)
    • Journal subset: Core Nursing
      • Select this limiter for results published only in scholarly (peer reviewed) nursing journals
      • Ursuline Library has online full-text access to almost all of the journals in CINAHL's Core Nursing collection
    • Any author is a nurse (checkbox)
      • Try some searches with and without this limiter. Sometimes it eliminates articles that really do have a nurse author!
    • Age Groups (hold down the Ctrl key and click to select multiple categories)
      • Aged: 65+ years
      • Aged, 80 and over
      • Try some searches with and without this limiter. Not all articles have age group descriptors attached to them.
    • Special Interest: Gerontologic Care
      • This limits your results to articles in a specific group of specialized journals
      • Try some searches with and without this limiter to be sure you aren't missing other great articles!
  • Do not overuse limiters! Sometimes they don't do what you think they will do. For example, the "Evidence-Based Practice" limiter in CINAHL eliminates most primary research articles and limits results to a small collection of highly specialized journals.

Bonus tips:

  • To broaden/expand results, consider synonyms and combine them with OR: heart OR coronary OR cardiac
  • Use truncation to include variant endings: therap* = therapy OR therapies OR therapeutic
  • Use quotation marks to bind keywords into a phrase like "chronic pain"
  • Lots of results? Try adding the keyword random* to zero in on primary research studies using random sampling or control groups

Finding Copies of Articles

If the database you are using doesn't provide the full text for an article directly, remember to follow these steps IN ORDER to search for a copy of the article. 

  • Find it buttonThis button will appear when the library has access to this article through another resource. When you see it, click on it to get the article.

Article Request

Find the Full Text

When you're going through your search results, there are a few ways to find the full-text of an article:

PDF Icon

Click on the PDF Full Text link.

Full Text Finder

Click on the Full Text Finder link to connect to the full text where it resides in another resource.

Journal Finder

Don't see a PDF Full Text link or Full Text Finder link? Or perhaps the Full Text Finder link didn't work properly? Try searching for the journal title (i.e. American Journal of Nursing) in Journal Finder.

Article Request

Still can't find the full-text?! Submit an Article Request form. We can often provide full-text access right away. If we can't, we will try to get the article through interlibrary loan (ILL). ILL can sometimes take several days to process, so please allow time when you enter "date needed by."