The Basic Information Gathering Process

1. Run a database search in MEDLINE (PubMed or Ovid) or another database (i.e. Google Scholar) via the Library’s web site in order to activate full text links in PubMed and Google Scholar. MEDLINE and most other databases search the article title, standard subject headings, and terms in abstracts (summaries) of articles. Google Scholar searches the full text text of articles.

  • For clinical medical topics, MEDLINE (PubMed or Ovid) is recommended, and Google Scholar may also be used.
  • For nursing- and allied health-oriented topics, it is recommended that you search MEDLINE and possibly Google Scholar. There will be some overlap between databases.
  • For basic science topics, it is recommended that you search MEDLINE, and possibly Google Scholar and AGRICOLA (for animal or plant-related research).
  • For business, finance, or administration, it is recommended that you search MEDLINE, Google Scholar, and Business Source Complete.
  • For education, ERIC, MEDLINE, and Google Scholar are recommended.
  • Limit the search if needed and possible. Consider such limitations as:
    1. English language.
    2. Human.
    3. Certain years.
    4. Certain subsets, when available (i.e. Core Clinical Titles in PubMed, Local Holdings in Ovid, etc.)

2. Choose the desired references from the list of references retrieved from the database(s) you searched. Direct links to the full text of articles are displayed in PubMed abstracts as Free and/or UTHCT Full Text. Some abstracts also include a blue UTHCT Print Holdings button to indicate that we have the journal in print. Google Scholar displays any direct full text links to the right of the regular link (i.e. document title).


MEDLINE references
contain a number that the Library will need if the
article needs to be obtained from another library. Be sure that the Unique Identifier (UI) or PubMed ID number (PMID) is present.
There is no charge for printing out bibliographic references and/or abstracts.

3.Identify articles that are locally available:


a.) The typical journal article citation is as follows:

b.) If a link to the article does not display in the database you searched (i.e. in the PubMed MEDLINE abstract), search the Library’s catalog by journal title for available print and electronic journals. Pull any desired articles located in the Library. When using electronic journals, display/print in PDF format if that option is given. There is a charge of $0.10 per page for printing articles at Library computers if the articles are not for official UTHSCT business.

4. Order articles not available in the Library.
Students from other local colleges who are not on rotation at UTHSCT should request articles via their own campus libraries.