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UWP 104F Health Sciences

Getting Started

Health Sciences Topic Ideas and Search Terms

Useful sources for finding recent research in all sciences, where you might find interesting topics, are the weekly magazines Science News and New Scientist. Additional magazines worth exploring include Scientific American, Stanford Medicine Magazine, Discover, Harvard Medicine Magazine, and Hopkins Medicine Magazine. In addition, the premier journals Science and Nature include the latest innovative research across the sciences. Premier licensed medical journals include JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association), NEJM (New England Journal of Medicine), Lancet , BMJ (British Medical Journal), and Nature Medicine.  Top open-access medical titles include PLoS Medicine and BMC Medicine.

Once you’ve picked a topic, you will need to think of search terms to use for locating articles and other publications. Use UC Library Search (for books, DVDs and more) and use the Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) and also (for books owned at the medical libraries) the National Library of Medicine (NLM) terms. Each library subject database also has subject lists/thesauri that can help you precisely search your topic, e.g PubMed has MeSH and BIOSIS Previews has Concept Codes and more.

For those taking library session with Ruth Gustafson, please fill out the following quick library survey also found at

Key Resources for Class

Before diving into your topic, doing some background information on the topic can be very helpful, to help refine your question.  Try these resources, not for references in your literature review, but to better develop your personal knowledge on a topic.

After doing some background research, dive into your topic and your research question with these databases  (see databases for more detailed list):