OHSU-PSU Joint School of Public Health: How to Use Library Resources

Database Specific Tutorials

Use the following links to find tutorials on using specific databases.

Finding Library Materials

To find library materials you will want to search the library at PSU and/or OHSU. Although both searches are differently set up, they both have basic and advanced search functions. Sometimes using an advanced search works better than a basic search, because it enables you to find library materials by multiple keywords, author, and/or by format (ebook, etc).

Screenshot of advanced search option

To use the PSU Library Search, be sure to log in using your ODIN credentials for full requesting and viewing options. Both the PSU Library Search and the OHSU Library Search, can show search results that indicate items available via all Summit Libraries. 

You can request these items directly from the PSU Library Search by clicking on requesting options under the "Find & Request" section of any item.

Image of requesting options

To ensure that you're finding materials available to you at PSU and at all other libraries, be sure to search using the "PSU & NW Academic Libraries" option. 

screen shot of search scope option for PSU & NW Academic Libraries

At OHSU this option is called "OHSU + NW Academic Libraries."

O H S U and N W Academic Libraries search


Choosing Databases to Search

Public Health is wide ranging discipline that calls on theory and information from the fields of medicine, social services, public affairs and policy, and statistics. Since public health is such a complex discipline, you will need to find good research databases that adequately cover the kinds of information you need to discover. There is no one perfect database for researching in Public Health.

This means you will need to choose good databases to search.

Here are some steps that will help you.

  1. Ask yourself, "who cares?" What disciplines care about your research topic? Your answer may guide you to find a database related to a particular discipline. E.g. if you're researching geriatric services, you may consider looking at a social work database.
  2. Use OHSU and PSU Library web sites to guide you. 
    1. OHSU has a comprehensive list of databases including a list of subjects you may peruse.
    2. PSU also has a comprehensive list of databases including lists by subject areas. At PSU you may also want to browse the many Research Guides available.
  3. Look at the Topics in Public Health page of this guide for suggestions on databases related to common public health topics.

Getting to Full-Text Articles

If you found an article in a database but you don't see full-text inlcuded, you will have to click on the Find it @ PSU button or the Find it @ OHSU Library button to see if the article is available in full-text. If the library does have the article, it will take you to a page with a link to download the article.

If the article is not available, you will see other options. Click through these options from the top down, like a flow chart.