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

This is the OHSU version of the Oregon MPH (Master of Public Health) program LibGuide, created by Emily Ford (PSU) and Laura Zeigen (OHSU)

Database Specific Tutorials

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

Finding Library Materials

To find library materials, search the library catalog at OHSU and/or at PSU.

Both catalogs 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).

In Portland State WorldCat, you may see search results that indicate a book is available at Summit Libraries. 

You can request these items directly from the catalog by clicking on the "request Summit item" button.

OHSU's catalog includes an option in the drop-down menu near the top of the screen to search both OHSU and Summit (the catalog for Northwest academic libraries). 

Choosing Databases to Search

Public Health includes a wide range of disciplines 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 a variety of 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.

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's comprehensive list of databases includes a drop-down list of subjects you may peruse.
    2. PSU's comprehensive list of databases includes lists by subject areas. At PSU you may also want to browse the many Subject Guides available.
  3. Look at the Topics in Public Health tab 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 has access to 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, including the option to request the desired article through interlibrary loan. Click through these options from the top down, like a flow chart.