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Nursing Research Resources: Databases

Nursing Specific Databases

Below is a list of recommended databases that are helpful in the fields of nursing, psychiatry/psychology, and allied health. Depending on your research topic and type of research (e.g., DNP project, manuscript, etc.), you may need to use more than one database. Our recommendations for conducting nursing research is to use always use the PubMed and CINAHL databases.

Each of these databases incorporates its own subject headings, such as MeSH for PubMed, and uses a different syntax for keyword searching. Developing search strategies and identifying appropriate MeSH terms can be tricky. The LRC Reference department  ( is happy to help you formulate your search strategies.  


PubMed is the world's largest database of bibliographic citations produced by the National Library of Medicine. It contains over 32 million biomedical journal citations that span from the 1940s to the present. To limit your search to nursing-specific articles, we suggest the following: 

  1. Use a combination of subject headings (MeSH) and keywords. For example, to search for articles discussing perioperative nursing, use the following search strategy:
    • ("Perioperative Nursing"[mesh] OR perioperative-nurs*[tw])
    • To view a list of nursing MeSH terms, click on the links below:
  2.   Limit your search results to PubMed's subset of nursing journal, nursingjournals[Filter]. For example:
    • (nursingjournals[Filter]) AND ("Perioperative Nursing"[mh] OR perioperative-nurs*[tw])

Note: [tw] searches for the term in the title, abstracts or for the author's keywords.


CINAHL (Cumulative Index for Nursing & Allied Health Literature) includes more than 4.1 million records dating back to 1937. 

  • Indexes articles from more than 5,400 journals from the fields of nursing and allied health dating back to 1937. Includes journals not indexed for PubMed/Medline. In addition, this database contains full-text for close to 1,400 journals indexed also back to 1937.
  • This database contains bibliographic citations from over 5,500 journals in the fields of nursing and allied health.
  • In addition to journal articles, you will find access to health care books, nursing dissertations, selected conference proceedings, standards of practice, education software, audiovisuals, and book chapters.


  • The JBI (Joanna Briggs Institute) EBP Database allows you to search simultaneously, a wide range of summarized and appraised evidence, to inform your practice.
  • This comprehensive range of resources includes over 3,000 records across five publication types: Evidence-Based Recommended Practices, Evidence Summaries, Best Practice Information Sheets, Systematic Reviews, and Systematic Review Protocols.
  • Subject Area Nodes: Evidence organized into health care area/specialties. Only information specific to that health topic is included in each database.
  • Ovid recommends you use Basic Search when searching this database.


  • The PsycINFO database indexes journals, books, book chapters, and dissertations in the fields of psychology, behavior (including social), clinical and cognitive psychology, and neuropsychology. It is compiled by the American Psychological Association (APA). The LRC's PsycINFO journal index spans the 1800s to the present.
  • It is searchable using the APA's Thesaurus of Psychological Index Terms (subject terms), keywords, author, or title.

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