Public Health

Articles, books, statistics, how to cite references, and more information about the multidisciplinary field of public health.

Find Journal Articles, News, Conference Papers, and More

Save your time! Use these search techniques:
  • Put quotation marks around PHRASES (two or more words), so that the words are searched together
    --- Example: "chicken pox"
     
  • Put an asterisk at the end of words, so that you get all of the word endings
    --- Example: high* = high, highs, higher, highest
     
  • Think of alternate spellings or synonyms
    --- Example: healthcare or "health care"; malfunction or failure
     
  • Start by putting your search words in the Title. If you get nothing, you can take them out of the Title and move them to "Anywhere."

Before you get to the specific information such as articles or statistics, get an overview of your topic:

1) Gale Encyclopedia of Public Health (2013)

2) Books -- Look in the library catalog (called "Catalyst") to find books about your topic

3) Medical information for consumers in Medlineplus.gov

4) Go to PubMed and use MeSH (the excellent thesaurus) -- This is where you can get definitions, too!
(See the PubMed/EMBASE page on this guide for how to get PubMed citations into RefWorks.)

5) Look for REVIEW ARTICLES. In most databases, just add the word "review" to your TITLE words.
In PubMed :

  • Do your search
  • On the left, under "Article types," click "Review"



    In other databases, just put the word "review" into the TITLE words

6) CQ Researcher for background and summaries of topics -- Make sure to notice the dates

7) Other Subject Databases of Interest (do your search and add "review" in the TITLE)

  • On the library home page, go to Articles and Databases --> Browse databases by Subject [this link is under the search box]
  • Choose Medicine, Sociology, Psychology, Political Science, or others, and search the databases listed under "Core"

 

Finding Information about Everything

Use journal articles to get:

  • a narrow or specific part of your topic
  • up-to-date information


1. Library home page --> Articles and Databases --> DATABASES

2.  Click "Browse all databases"

undefined


3. Choose a subject to see the databases with information about it.
 

undefined


4. In each list, start with the databases under CORE -- they are the best and most relevant 

  • For a description about what's in the database, click "More Info" next to the database name

In addition to news, news items can also provide the names of information sources about your topics.

For business news: the best database is ABI/INFORM, and the other two under CORE

  • Library home page --> Databases by Topic --> Business --> CORE


For law, regulations, and related topics, start with CQ Researcher

  • Choose "Hot Topics," then "Health"
  • sort by date

See this guide's page about Literature Reviews.

Who else is doing this kind of work?

You can find out by doing regular searches. But if you have found a great article that is about your topic, you can also see who cited THAT article.

For example, if you found a great article from 2017, you can see what other articles cited that article since it was written. If the author of your favorite article was cited by someone else, there is a good chance that the citing author (that is, the person who mentioned *your* article) is doing similar work. (Remember that newer articles will not have had time to be cited by other authors.)

Databases that tell you who cited papers are:

  1. Web of Science -- (see screen shots below)
  2. Scopus -- Go to "cited by" on the far right, and click on the number
  3. Google Scholar -- Tells you how many times each article has been cited, and click on the number. (NOTE: Google Scholar's number will almost always be too high, because Scholar adds additional things such as lecture notes and Powerpoint slides.)

In Web of Science, choose "Cited Reference Search," and add the information about the paper you want to see who cited:

Click SEARCH, and click the number under "Citing Articles":

The library's Citing Sources guide gives examples for the three main reference styles and some others.

  • You are using APA, so your references will be in alphabetical order by author

For Writing Help

Writing Tips

  • Spell Check is good, but you must still read through because there are many words that mean different things (e.g., there/their;  great/grate)
  • What about authors who disagree with you or point out limitations to your approach? You should make sure to talk about those; for example, "Some authors point out that _______. However, our approach avoids that problem by ______."
  • Every word and every sentence must be clear. If you use words like "it" or "he" or "those," make sure that the reader will know who or what the word is referring to.
  • Every paragraph must follow logically from the one before it -- if you are going to introduce a new subject, say something like, "Related to that is the concept of X," or "Now we will discuss Y."

-----------------------------
Thesis Statement

Make sure that your thesis statement is very clear.

---Here is a definition from the Writing Center at U. North Carolina Chapel Hill
"A thesis statement is “usually a single sentence near the beginning of your paper (most often, at the end of the first paragraph) that presents your argument to the reader...
The rest of the paper…gathers and organizes evidence that will persuade the reader of the logic of your [analysis].”

---"How to Write a Strong Thesis Statement" (from U. Evansville, IN).

---More information about your thesis statement (adapted from Writing Style Guide, Trident University International):

  • The most effective writing is centered around one main point. All supporting points, details, and examples are related to that one main point, which is often called "the thesis statement."

  • The goal of academic writing is to inform, explain, and persuade, so this statement must be extremely clear.

  • Having a thesis statement can also help to keep you focused as you write.

  • Avoid saying “In this paper I will discuss...” Instead, use your thesis statement do these things:
    (1)
    state the specific topic that you will be writing about
    (2)
    express the purpose of the paper
    (3)
    reveal your perspective about the topic
    (4)
    provide a “road map” for your paper

Journal Impact Factors
  • Go to Journal Citation Reports
  • Choose "select categories" on the left
  • Choose the only PH category there:


     
  • Leave everything else as is, scroll to bottom, hit SUBMIT
  • Choose "Journals by Rank" and sort alphabetically to find AJPH
  • Find the journal (no,  I don't know why it's listed twice), and you'll see the impact factor:
     

  •  
  • Impact factor of 4,380 - but that means nothing unless it's ranked within its subject category (as the database defines that)
  • So now, go back and sort by "Journal Impact Factor", and find what number AJPH is in that whole list:


     
  • It's 1,151 -- that sounds pretty low, but there are 12,271 journals in this category, so it's not that low after all
  • The problem is that this category has tons of journals in it, which doesn't give a very good feel for how highly ranked this journal actually is
  • This journal may be in another category, but you'd have to hunt for it
     
RefWorks is the citation manager that is supported by JHU. It is free for you.
  • Citation managers let you export citations FROM databases INTO the manager, so that you can put them into separate folders, and print out a bibliography in whatever style you want
  • Here is our guide about how to use it
Use the NEW RefWorks! Log in here.
  • Here are video tutorials about the NEW RefWorks
  • NEVER search from within RefWorks; always search from within the database itself