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Smart Consumers, Smart Research

I try to keep abreast of recent research findings for many reasons, but for me, there are two that I find particularly important:

  1. I want to be an informed consumer.
  2. In order to provide the best treatment as a future clinician, I have to be aware of the latest findings.

It's so easy to get caught up in hype. How many times have we read a paragraph or watched a news story about what seems like a promising treatment for a debilitating illness just to find that it isn't as effective as we thought? Or, alternately, how frequently do we hear that something is horrible and we should immediately extricate it from our lives? But how often do we really know what the scientists who wrote the article actually said? In many cases, abstracts are available for free online and often you can gain access to full-text articles through the resources that Richland Library provides.

When I'm working on a paper or proposal, I usually start with journals that are relevant to my field of study. Thankfully, I can find a breadth of topics and often I look to the references section of the article to find cross-references and related scholarship. Unfortunately, the cross-referenced articles are not always available to me through my governing body's at-home journal access. Peer reviewed journals in EBSCOHost Masterfile are a godsend when that's the case. Because I'm looking at an article citation in a journal, I have the information that I need to search for a full-text copy of related scholarship.

If you're interested in digging deeper or you need to find peer-reviewed journals relevant to your professional pursuits, Richland Library has some great resources. Check out the links below.

  • Public Library of Science (PLoS)
    Open access, peer-reviewed scientific articles.
  • PubMed
    PubMed comprises over 22 million citations for biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online books. PubMed citations and abstracts include the fields of biomedicine and health, covering portions of the life sciences, behavioral sciences, chemical sciences, and bioengineering. PubMed also provides access to additional relevant web sites and links to the other NCBI molecular biology resources.