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Nursing Resources : Research & Literature Review Help

Getting Full Text of Articles

Find It undefined

Click the Find It button or the "Find It at UW Madison" link in most databases to:

  • access online full text (when available)
  • see if the journal or book is available in print (Library Catalog)
  • request a free pdf of the article or book chapter if full text is not available online (Request a Copy)

The Find It button should automatically appear in select databases if you access them through the library's proxy. For more information on Find It, visit the Find It FAQ page.

Types of Nursing Research

A meta-analysis refers to methods focused on contrasting and combining results from different studies, in the hope of identifying patterns among study results, sources of disagreement among those results, or other interesting relationships that may come to light in the context of multiple studies. Can be either either type of result, primarily compares quantitative research studies.

A Review article is an attempt by one or more writers to sum up the current state of the research on a particular topic. Ideally, the writer searches for everything relevant to the topic, and then sorts it all out into a coherent view of the “state of the art” as it now stands.  Do not confuse this with a “peer-reviewed” article.

Good, but overlooked Databases

Google Scholar

The difference between Google and Google Scholar is that Google Scholar focuses on the scholarly literature available on the Internet.  This includes, articles, theses, books, abstracts, U.S. court opinions, and patents, found on the websites of academic publishers, professional societies, online repositories, universities and more.  By scholarly literature, Google means publications that are based on the results of research or studies.

Google, on the other hand, has a broader scope, and is looking for resources regardless of where they come from.  Resources in a Google search do not have to be scholarly, and do not have to be based on research.

Try it!

Try searching for "teenage pregnancy" in Google, then try the same search in Google Scholar.

  • What differences do you see in the list of results? 
  • If you were doing research on the use of botox in the medical field, which version of Google would you use, and why?

The Wikipedia Problem

Wikipedia can be a good starting point for an overview of a topic or to get research ideas, but it is NOT considered a reliable or scholarly source!

"Anyone with Internet access can write and make changes to Wikipedia articles."

APA 6th & 7th Cheat Sheets

PubMed, CINAHL, PsycINFO, and other EBSCOHost databases can also provide APA citations.  Click on the article and then look to the right and you should see multiple options; one is "Cite".  It will list the correct citation format for APA, AMA, and others.


Plagiarize: "to steal and pass off (the ideas and words of another) as one's own" or to "present as new and original an idea or product derived from an existing source."1 The University of Wisconsin takes very seriously this act of "intellectual burglary," and the penalties are severe. 
1. Merriam Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, 10th ed. (Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster, 1993), 888.

The UW's Writing Center's page on plagiarism and common writing assignments will help you avoid plagiarism by teaching you how to properly integrate information from published sources into your own writing.  If it's not your idea or words, cite it!

Fora additional individual help writing a paper, check out

Check out the FAQs

If you have a quick question, check the "FAQ" page (Misc tab) to see if it's been answered.  If not, contact Mary the School of Nursing Librarian or, "Ask A Librarian".