Nursing Resources

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BSN Resources

Formulating a Searchable Question

There are many frameworks for organizing your clinical question. PICOT is the framework that we often use in evidence-based practice. 

The PICOT format asks us to focus on the key concepts that we're interested in, which will help us develop our strategy to search databases for evidence from peer-reviewed journal articles. ​

​The elements of PICOT are:​

P stands for patient population or disease of interest​

I is for intervention or issue of interest​

C is the comparison intervention - what you are comparing your proposed intervention to, 

O is your desired outcome,

T refers to time involved to demonstrate your desired outcome

Learning How to Search for Evidence

Where to search?

First consider what type of information could answer your question. 

If you're looking for background information on a topic, consider some of these sources, including our library catalog, Virgo

If you need peer-reviewed journal articles on a specific topic, choose databases with appropriate coverage for your topic. 

Visit our page for resources on the history of nursing

Basic Principles of Database Searching

How to Obtain Full-Text Articles

Database searches provide bibliographic citations - information about articles, such as their titles, abstracts, author names, etc. Sometimes, the full text of an article is also available because we subscribe to the journal that the article is contained in. 

Consider installing the LibKey Nomad extension on your browser. This extension makes it easy to obtain PDFs of full-text articles in one click, although it won't work with all databases. Review the "Connecting from Off-Grounds" page for more information about LibKey Nomad and other extensions that will help discover full-text PDFs. 

If we don't have a subscription for the journal your article was published in, we can get a PDF of the article for you via interlibrary loan


APA Format

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