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Mount Carmel Health Sciences Library Orientation


MCHSL Search Options

Use the above tabs within this box to learn how to effectively search the MCHS Library resources.  Each tab demonstrates a unique search option to optimize finding articles and other reliable resources.

Screenshot Example:

1. "MCHSL Search" 

Advantages: The "MCHSL Search" option is a great place to start if you want to "cast a wide net" to find a large collection of articles, journals, books, and other resources. It is also the best place to search for background information on a topic or project. 

"MCHSL Search" Results Page:

Below is a screenshot of the "MCHSL Search" results page using the search terms from above.  This "wide cast" search can be customized to show the most relevant resources first or sorted by publication date. Choose literature from a number of leading databases such as Medline, CINAHL, Lippincott and others.


2. "Clinical Search"

The screenshot below is an example of how to use "Clinical Search" available as another option on the MCHS Library website. 

Advantages: "Clinical Search" is a customized search option that is ideal for finding articles based on an Evidence-Based PICOT question:

PICOT Question: In Elderly Adults (P), how does T'ai Chi (I) compared to no exercise (C) affect fall rates (O) within six months (T)?

See below for an example of how to construct a PICOT question:

Evidence-Based Questions are formulated using the PICOT methodology, an effective way to define your topic and guide the search process. Before searching appropriate databases for literature, it is helpful to create a PICOT question. Once you have a well-defined question, choose the best concepts to use as search terms.  Also be sure to write down related search terms that are similar in meaning to your chosen PICOT concepts. 

Patient-Population or Problem:

Question: What are the patient characteristics?  

Concept:  Elderly at risk for falling

Related Search terms and synonyms:

Related Search Terms: Seniors, Older Adults, Aged: 65+ years ( Use as additional search terms) 

Intervention or Exposure: 

Question: What interventions will make them well?

Concept: T'ai Chi

Related Search terms and synonyms:

Related Search Concepts: Exercise, Yoga, Martial Arts., Tai Ji  (Use as additional search terms)

Comparison or Placebo:

Question: What is the intervention compared with?

Concept: No Exercise or Status Quo

Related Search Concepts:

Sedentary lifestyle (Use as additional search terms)


Question: What is the intended outcome of the intervention?

Concept: Reduced Falls

Related Search Concepts: 

Accidental Falls, Trip, Stumble, Falling (Use as additional search terms)


Question: What is the time frame for the intervention?

Concept: 6 months

Related Search Concepts:

Time Factors (Use as additional search terms)

PICOT Question: In Elderly Adults (P), how does T'ai Chi (I) compared to no exercise (C) affect fall rates (O) within six months (T)?

Below are links to PICOT worksheets that can be used as models to formulate your own PICOT question:

3. "Advanced Search"

Advantages: "Advanced Search" is an ideal search option when you have a particular focus and want to use a combination of search terms and Boolean Operators  (see below) to find literature that is relevant to your topic. 


The "Advanced Search" option on the MCHS Library page allows you to create more precise searches using Boolean operators to find relevant articles. There is also a "Peer Reviewed" check box to find the most reliable literature on any topic. These types of articles go through a rigorous process before they are published and indexed in the literature.

Below is a screenshot showing how to enter concepts into the "Advanced Search" option using "Query Builder." Scroll down further to see an explanation of Boolean operators and how they function.

See below for an explanation of Boolean Operators and how they are used in database searching: