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NUR 3165 - Nursing Research

This Libguide is designed to help UCF Nursing students enrolled in NUR3165 identify, understand, and effectively use relevant electronic sources, including eBooks and article databases.

Practice Exercise 3 - Finding Quantitative studies

One strategy is to search for a particular type of primary research article that in most cases uses a quantitative design: the Clinical Trial.

A)  Start by going to the CINAHL Advanced Search screen and typing clinical trial in the first search box. Then change the field on the right to PT Publication type. This searches for the term Clinical Trial in the Publication Type field.
B) Add a keyword related to a symptom, patient population, or nursing intervention in the second box. In this case, type exercis* and women (keep in mind that you could also leave it blank to browse for articles).
C) Scroll down and check the boxes next to ‘Research Article’, Scholarly (Peer Reviewed) Journals, and ‘English Language’, and change the Journal Subset to ‘Nursing’ .
D) In the third line, type Nurs* in the box (using the asterisk * at the end of a root word will also search for variations of the term like nurse, nurses, or nursing) and change the field to AF Author Affiliation

Click Search.

 Remember to set the “Page Options” to Detailed (then click Apply) to display the entire abstract for each record in the results list for easy screening.

undefined Go to Question 8 in the quiz.

Note: As with all of the other methods, make sure to scan the article record and read the abstract to make sure that you are dealing with a primary research study and not an unwanted article type like a systematic review or an educational/informational article.

Your should retrieve about 45 results. Click on the title “The Effect of Yoga Exercise on Improving Depression, Anxiety, and Fatigue in Women With Breast Cancer: A Randomized Controlled Trial.”  

Click on the Full Text button  on the left hand side to see if the full text is available in another database.

Remember: Sometimes when you click on a database listed in Find Full Text to retrieve a full-text article, it doesn’t work. If this happens, go to the UCF Libraries homepage and select Online Journals. Then search for the journal title (i.e. - Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing) and try the different options listed under Full Text Sources to find a database with the full text.  You may have to browse by year, volume, issue, and page numbers to locate the specific article. If that doesn't work or if you get stuck, please contact your embedded librarian, or the Ask-A-Librarian service for further assistance.

E) Close out the full text and return to CINAHL (it may be in a different window). Then click on the ‘New Search’ link in the top left corner when finished.  

Now let's try an expanded strategy by using some subject headings related to specific data analyses and research design methods to capture articles with a high probability of being quantitative studies.


undefined Go to Questions 9 -15 in the quiz.

F) Start a new search and type Data Analysis in the search line and check the Suggest Subject Terms box.


G)  On the next screen, scroll "Data Analysis, Statistical" and "Data Analysis Software" and explode each term by check the boxes on the right hand side like so:

H) Then click the Browse Additional Terms link at the bottom of the page. Type quantitative articles in the box and click Browse.

I) On the next screen, click on the blue hyperlink for Quantitative Studies to go to the hierarchical view.

J) Check the Quantitative Studies box and then explode the Experimental Studies and Quasi-Experimental Studies subject headings like so:

When finished, click on Search Database in the upper right hand corner. 

K) Add the search string nurs* AND interruption* AND medication error* in the second line.

L) Type the term Research in the third line and change the field on the right hand side to PT Publication Type. Note: this is the same as checking the Research Article box in the advanced search. 


Click Search.

Find and click on the article "Nurses’ Responses to Interruptions During Medication Tasks: A Time and Motion Study" in the results list.

Scroll down to Major Subjects and Minor Subjects. These terms are the subject headings for this article. So if you see the ultimate article, look to see what terms it is tagged with and add them to the search in the appropriate line if relevant (remember each line in the above search represents a group of terms that act as synonyms – like those that belong in the same circle in a Venn diagram).   

Remember that you can narrow your results by date, language and source type in the left hand side menu. 

Proceed to the next section when finished.