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Library Introduction & FAQ

FAQ and introduction to using A.T. Still Memorial Library for research and learning

Start Your Research

Start your research from the The Library's homepage or your Program Toolkit Page.

The Library's homepage gives you access to three search options for its resources, each best for specific types of research.

Still OneSearch

Image of HomePage search box, Still OneSearch circled

This search includes all of the Library’s journal articles, e-books, most subscribed research databases and indexes, the vast public biomedical literature index PubMed, and the overall largest number of resources. You can check “limiters” from the homepage that will narrow your search results right from the beginning of your search – several are checked by default and must be unchecked if you do not want them. You will find many results that are not full-text, but you can still get them – see below for directions.

Start here for most research, in any subject.

UpToDate, DynaMed, Rehabilitation Reference Center 

Search box from library home, clinical references tab circled

This search includes three of the Library’s core clinical point of care resources. More are available on the Databases A-Z List or from the Databases Help tab, but these three can answer many clinical questions.

Start here for clinical questions or research.


Search box on Library Home, PubMed tab circled

This search includes PubMed, the premier biomedical research database in the world, with the addition of all of ATSU’s subscribed journals that are included. You can search PubMed freely anywhere (and will be able to do so after you graduate), but if you start here, you can include all of the full-text journals that ATSU provides. You will find many results that are not full-text, but you can still get them – see below for directions. 

Start here for medical research questions.

Find Your Program's Resources

The Library is creating Program Toolkits that pull together the most useful resources and tutorials for each program. Every student can use every resource that the Library offers, but these collections include those of special interest.

Find a Book or e-Book

The Library offers three major ways to find e-books and books.

If you know the book’s title, try searching for it in the Library Lance catalog linked in the top left menu of the Library homepage.

  • To access an e-book, click on the link in the box that says A.T. Still: Click to access.

If you want to narrow your Still OneSearch results to just the e-book results, select Books in the Limit by Type of Resource menu on the left of the screen.

  • Image of Still One Search results with type limit circled
  • To access it, click on the link below the record citation that says A.T. Still: Click to access.
The Library has many required textbooks and recommended references as e-books. When possible, these are directly linked from the Library Program Toolkits.

Note The Library has e-books from multiple publishers and sources, which means that they do not all look the same. See the e-Book Help page for more information about using a specific e-book source or publisher.

Note : The majority of the print books are housed in the Missouri Library. If you are in Arizona and wish to use a print book that appears in your search results, you can get it quickly through Interlibrary Loan.

Special e-Book Issue : Some e-books allow one person to use them at a time, some allow a few, and some allow the entire university.

If too many people try to use an e-book at once, the newest person will not be able to access until one of the others finishes and closes their browser. Please close e-books as soon as you are finished to be courteous to your peers. If you cannot get into an e-book, try again in half-an-hour. If you want to know how many users a particular book allows, check its catalog record or Ask Cyberlibrarian.

Find a Journal

The Library has thousands of full-text journals that will give you immediate access to articles. There are many ways to find them, but some are better for specific purposes.

If you already know the journal title

Search for the journal title in the eJournal index, which you can find linked on the Databases page, or on your Program Toolkit

  • Do not include the article title
  • Browse by year and issue to find your desired article

If The Library does not have the journal article you need in full-text, you can ask us to order it for free through Interlibrary Loan. This typically takes 1-3 business days.

If you want to monitor the journal for new articles

The Library provides access to BrowZine, which is a mobile app/web resource that will let you create a personal ID to save journal titles of interest and monitor them for new articles. It will show a count of all new available issues and articles, as well as let you download articles, e-mail them, send them to other app programs or citation managers, etc.

See the BrowZine guide for more information about how to use it.

If you want to find available full-text journals for a topic

Visit the Journal A-Z list provided by BrowZine to browse lists of full-text journals by subject.

Note : Some available journals are not included in the subject browse lists. You can still find these journals by searching for them within BrowZine, which will search by journal title keywords.

If you want to find journal articles from many journals All of the above methods work best if you already know there is a specific single journal that you are interested in finding. To find a variety of articles rather than only articles from one journal, use Still OneSearch or PubMed.

Find a Database

The Library provides access to dozens of databases and resources for a variety of purposes - learning and education, research, clinical practice, exam preparation, data management, etc. Find them using either of these methods:

Search or Browse for databases by title or subject using the Library's Database A-Z list.
Find recommended databases for your program from your Program Toolkit Guide.

If you need help using a database, contact Susan E. Swogger. If you need to report a problem with a database, contact Hal Bright.

Find Mobile Apps

The Library provides two major apps to give access to our online collections:

BrowZine App  ATSU Library Clinical App
BrowZine Utility app that delivers thousands of academic journals to your tablet, phone, or the web.  Create a personal bookshelf of journals to keep up with the newest articles and research from your selection.  ATSU Library Single mobile access point to ATSU’s clinical databases, key reference e-books, etc, for use in the clinic at the point of care.
The Library also subscribes to many resources that provide their own apps, including UpToDate, ClinicalKey, Canopy Speak, Thieme e-Book Library, etc. See here for the full list.

Find Streaming Media or Images

The Library's collections include many streaming videos and audio recordings, some of which are included in the catalog and some of which are not. There are three primary ways to find them.

Still OneSearch Some of streaming media are included in the Library catalog and Still OneSearch's collection of resources. Find them by searching in Still OneSearch and select Video in the Limit by Type of Resource box to the left of the results list screen.
Library Streaming Media Guide Most streaming media files are not included individually in Still OneSearch. Find them and instructions for using them by visiting the Library Streaming Media Guide.
Library Image Guide Find images provides by the Library's subscription and recommended resources, including detailed information about image copyright and how to find images available for reuse

Find a Test, Measure, or Instrument

Find an instrument or measure by topic or name
Find a review of an instrument
Find the complete text for some instruments
Useful keywords for searching for instruments in Article Databases assessment, instrument, survey, measure, measurement, inventory, test, questionnaire, validity, reliability, psychological tests, health assessment, [specific instrument name], etc.

Find Research Tutorials

Are you interested in self-learning about how to use online resources, PubMed, health statistics, etc? The Library has curated lists of useful online tutorials.

Library Research Tutorials A select collection of tutorials to support health sciences and library research
Educational Technology Development Center Information and tutorials about a wide assortment of educational technology, including BlackBoard, data management, social media, collaboration, media editing, etc.

Find Copyright Information

The Library does not employ any lawyers and cannot offer legal advice on copyright. However, it does offer guidance on finding information on copyright and fair use, and how to find information about copyright terms for specific texts and images.

Library Copyright Guide Resources, tutorials, and information about the broadest range of academic copyright issues
Library Image Guide Detailed information about image copyright and how to find images available for reuse

Search for Articles : Basic Tips & Controlled Vocabularies

Database searching is different than internet searching because databases have a much more limited, specific structure. Searchers must use a specific type of code and structure to be able to tell the database what sorts of information and articles that they want. Fortunately, most of them have a similar structure with only superficial differences. The following will help make most searches better.

Look for the Help, or User Guide, or About, or Support, or similarly named links for information about searching in a specific database.

Keep your search string, or search terms, short at first and then narrow it down with later searches after you see what you get.

  • EVERY letter you include reduces the number of results you find - the more you put in, the less you get out

Search for all different ways to state the same concept. Use a thesaurus or field specific glossary. Find keywords from article abstracts.

  • Other researchers may use different terms for the same thing you are interested in, especially in different fields. Terminology also changes over time. Search for every variation you can think of. Use Boolean OR and parentheses to build this into a single search.

Use Boolean search structure to control your search.

  • Boolean is a form of simple coding that nearly all databases will accept - see below for more information.

Record your search terms and search locations.

  • This will allow you to run consistent searches in different sources, and will allow others to repeat your research. This is required for many types of formal research studies.
  • Many databases will allow you to create a personal ID and save your searches or found articles within the database.
  • It is also a common practice to save search information and results in a citation manager such as Zotero or Mendeley, or to record it using cloud based utilities like Google Docs.

Consult and use controlled vocabularies for databases that have them.

  • Many databases, including PubMed, have special vocabularies that they use to describe included books and articles in order to ensure that similar articles are described in similar ways. This is very important because there are so many different ways of describing the same concepts in English.
  • Most biomedical databases use PubMed's MeSH vocabulary, which you can freely consult via the MeSH Database and learn more about from the National Library of Medicine's Tutorial
  • Many databases use MeSH as a base and add more specific vocabulary of their own; if this is the case, you can find these vocabularies within the database.

When you find one article that meets your needs, look for the Keywords, or MeSH terms, or other information in the abstract that match your interests.

  • Search for more articles using those terms.

If you find nothing, or less than you expected to find, check your spelling.

  • If your spelling is correct, you are probably using different words than researchers and authors writing about your topic used. Try searching for a broader version of your search, or looking for other words.

Search for Articles Using Boolean

Boolean is a type of very simple programming language that will let you tell databases what you are searching for much more exactly and greatly improve your chances of search success.

Basic Boolean Operators Explained  


Use AND in between search terms to tell the database that your results must include both terms.


Term Results
Dog 500 articles
Pony 250 articles
Dog AND Pony 100 articles
AND boolean image


Use OR in between search terms to tell the database that your results can include either or both of the search terms.


Term Results
Dog 500 articles
Pony 250 articles
Dog OR Pony 750 articles
image of boolean OR


Use NOT to tell the database that you do not want articles including a search term within your results.

Use this as the last part of a search string for best effectiveness.


Term Results
Dog 500 articles
Pony 250 articles
Dog NOT Pony 400 articles
image of boolean NOT
Boolean Punctuation 

You can build complex Boolean statements and search strings by adding punctuation, in similar form to alegbraic expressions. 


Use parentheses to group search terms and tell the database which combinations you want searched and in what order.

Example : (Dog AND Pony AND Cat) AND (Donkey OR Burro)

This string will find every article that includes the terms dog, pony, cat, and either donkey or burro. It will exclude any article that does not include all three of the first terms and either or both of the second terms.

Quotation Marks

Use quotation marks around any phrase to tell the database that you want it to be searched for in exactly the entered spelling and order.

Example : "spotted dog"

This string will find every article that includes the phrase spotted dog, but will ignore any article that does not, even if it includes dog and spotted, but they are not next to each other.

Some databases do not allow all of these, and some use different symbols or permit more. See the Help or More Info section in any database for more specific information.

Examples of Boolean Search Strings

healthcare AND ethics This will find articles including healthcare and the word ethics.
(healthcare OR "health care") AND ethics This will find articles including either healthcare or the phrase health care, and the word ethics.
((healthcare OR "health care") AND ethics) NOT nurses This will find articles including either healthcare or the phrase health care and the word ethics, and exclude every article mentioning nurses.

Search for Articles that are Peer-Reviewed

Before you search a database

Most databases of articles offer an option to limit your search to peer-reviewed or scholarly journals. Look around to find it and check the option before you search to use this feature. 


Still OneSearch EBSCO
image of peer-reviewed option for Still OneSearch image of peer-reviewed option in Ebsco search

PubMed is a major important exception - while most journals indexed in PubMed are peer-reviewed, it does not mark them as such. To find out, you must follow the instructions below.

After you find a journal

If you find a journal article and want to know if it is peer-reviewed, you should :

  • Look the journal up on its publisher's website using Google.
  • Once you've found the journal, look for the "About" or "Information for Authors" or "Information" section
    • Usually this will be visible in the header or footer menus
  • It will either say directly that it is peer-reviewed or discuss the review process.
    • If it does not state this, it is probably not peer-reviewed. If you are still unsure, you can contact the publisher and ask, or ask the Library for assistance.

Note: - even in peer-reviewed journals, some types of articles are not typically peer-reviewed. This includes editorials, commentary, opinions, etc. 

Search for Articles Citing an Article

Some resources make it simpler to find more articles citing a particular article held within the same database. This can be very helpful both in finding new research and in finding other related studies.

PubMed IMAGE of pubmed cited by feature

EbscoHost Databases

(PsycINFO, Academic Search Complete, Business Source Premier, CIHAHL, SPORTdiscus, etc.)

Google Scholar IMAGE OF cited articles link in google scholar


How to Use Wikipedia & Social Media Sources

These sources can be added or edited by anyone, without any guarantee of accuracy or even attempted accuracy. DON'T use them as major sources. DO use them as pointers to better sources & sources for ideas. Verify everything found using one of these sources.

Find ideas or research updates to investigate by following shared links or news stories, or by following discussions on general social sites used by a broad range of the general public such as TwitterRedditand Quora.

  • These sites are great for finding out about new studies, events, conferences, current policy discussion, legal changes, etc. that are in need of further investigation
  • Statements found here are NOT RELIABLE at all - everything you find here must be verified by consulting other sources

Join social and research communities and blog sites for researchers and health sciences professionals such as  PubMed CommonsF1000 WorkspaceNEJM Resident 360, Dental Elfdentaltown, ResearchGate, Mendeley, other networks. Chat with other interested and hopefully expert people.

  • These sites are great sources to find out about potential jobs, new research, potential research partners, interesting articles, etc.
  • Look up the work of researchers or chatterers who share things on the above – ensure that they are respectable before you trust their work
  • Find the original article or source mentioned in shared stories or news blurbs and use it to support your ideas
  • If you want to include a comment from the discussion, cite both the discussion, and then the actual research article – make it clear that you verified the discussion from the article

Use Wikipedia to get a rough overview of an idea fast, but don’t trust it as being verifiably true.

  • Look up articles or research in PubMed or other respected sources to support ideas discovered via Wikipedia.
  • Quote the published articles or presentations, NOT the Wikipedia synopsis.

How to Evaluate & Use a Website as Source

Review websites carefully before trusting them as sources.

Who is paying for and managing the website?
  • This should be easy to find
  • Ranking the domain for trustworthiness:
    • .gov (caveat : for non-politically controversial science)
    • .edu
    • .org
    • .com
How often is the site updated?
  • This should be both obvious and frequent

Who reviews the information before posting? 

  • Health info should be reviewed by someone with med/research/dental credentials, which they should state
Does the site present facts and original research, and not opinion?
  • Avoid advertisements, hyperbole, anecdotes, personal opinions, unsourced statements, vendor sponsored sites, etc.

Who is the intended audience? Is it suitable for your needed complexity of answer?

  • If you are looking for research, consult research articles or scholars
  • If you are looking for patient education materials, ensure that the comprehension level matches your patient's needs
How do you cite a website?
  • Citing a website is different for different citation styles. Consult your publication style guide, or use a citation builder such as or your citation manager for assistance in  building a citation.
What should you do if you find a description of a study that you want to use as a source?
  • If you find an abstract or mention of a study on a website, you should find the full text of the original study, read it, and cite that actual study.
    • You don't need to cite the website you used to find the study unless you want to actually quote a comment made on the website. 
  • If you want to quote or cite the commentary or discussion that you found on the website, you should cite the website itself and not the study.
    • You should also find the actual study and review it to see if you also want to include information from it and cite it as an additional source.

Additional Resources:

Evaluating Internet Health Information : a Tutorial from the National Library of Medicine

Trust it or Trash it? : an interactive algorithm for evaluating websites

Get Help with Citation & Writing

The Library provides an assortment of resources to help with writing, citation styles, and citation management.

Writing Support & Resources

ATSU Writing Center offers much support and many reference documents about writing and citation.

Library Writing Resources Guide offers a number of resources and citation guides.

Purdue OWL Research & Citation Resources offers guidance for research, citation, and writing for both APA and AMA styles.

APA Style Blog offers brief articles about specific citation situations for APA style.

AMA Manual of Style is the complete style guide for AMA style.

Quick Format a Citation

If you need to quickly build an APA or AMA citation, use this utility or your citation manager. This is not guaranteed. You MUST double-check the citation - if you choose the wrong options, your citation will be wrong.

Find DOIs

DOIs (Digital Object Identifiers) are permanent, unique registered identifiers that are required for APA citation of online articles.

Use CrossRef to find DOIs for your citations.

Manage Your Citations

A citation manager, also called a reference or bibliographic management system, is a utility that will allow you to store all of your citations in one personal account and will generate a formatted citation list. ATSU supports several free, portable options.

Find more information via the Citation Management Guide.

Get Help with Research

The Library has a Liaison Librarian system, with a specific Librarian assigned to each School. Each of these Librarians also acts as a subject expert for their associated subjects. All Librarians are available for consultation.

Athletic Training Adrienne Brodie, MLS
Audiology Adrienne Brodie, MLS
Biomedical Sciences Jean L. Sidwell, MLIS

ASDOHMike Kronenfeld, MLS, MBA

MOSDOHSusan E. Swogger, MLIS

Health Administration Susan E. Swogger, MLIS
Health Education Susan E. Swogger, MLIS
Health Professions Education Susan E. Swogger, MLIS
Health Sciences Susan E. Swogger, MLIS
Kinesiology Susan E. Swogger, MLIS
Osteopathic Medicine

KCOMJean L. Sidwell, MLIS

SOMAAdrienne Brodie, MLS

Physical Therapy Adrienne Brodie, MLS
Physician Assistants Adrienne Brodie, MLS
Public Health Susan E. Swogger, MLIS

Get Help with a Resource Problem

Do you need to report a problem with an e-Resource or request help using one? 

Report a library resource access problem Contact Hal Bright, MIRLS, Electronic Resources Librarian
Get help using electronic resources Contact Susan Swogger, MLIS
Get help with BlackBoard Contact Kirsty Gaither, MLIS, MA
Find tutorials for resources Visit the Database Help Guide

Get Alumni Access to Library Resources

The Library provides access to an assortment of skilled research support for alumni:

  • Free & low-cost Interlibrary Loan via Loansome Doc
  • Research consultation
  • Assistance with medical and other literature searches
  • Access to a subset of databases : CINAHL, Rehabilitation Reference Center, Lexicomp Online for Dentistry, etc.

Alumni may access these services through the ATSU Alumni Access Portal.

Request New Resources

No library will ever have all resources that everyone wants. If you want to get access to things that the Library doesn't have, you have two options:

Interlibrary Loan

The Library can ask another library to email or loan us an article or print book. There is no charge to you, and it typically will take 1-3 business days. Use this when :

  • Is it a journal article?
  • Do you just need it once?
  • Do you need it very quickly?
  • Is it a book outside the typical subject range of the library?
Request New Purchase

The Library can also try to purchase a new e-book, journal, film, or other resource. Due to budget and planning concerns, it will typically be swift with e-books but may take significant time with other resources. Use this when:

  • Is it an e-book that might be used by other students or faculty?
  • Is it a required or recommended textbook?
  • Are you a professor who wants to use it with your students or research?

Create Personal Resource Accounts

Why Create a Personal Account?

Many online databases and tools offer their best benefits if you create a personal account. Most will allow you to use some of their functions without a personal account, but if you create one, you can save your progress in tutorials; save articles, bookmarks or even notes that you create; save searches or create automatic new-content alerts for yourself; earn CME/CE credits; renew library books, etc. 

Set Up Instructions

  • Login to the resource using your ATSU login and password
    • Note : If the resource is a free resource or has a free version (MendeleyZoteroMy NCBI, etc.), you will be able to later change the associated email address and carry your personal account with you even after graduation
  • Create a personal ID for the resource following its directions
    • Find the option for doing this by clicking on something that would require it - either a folder, a my-account link, save link, etc.
  • Use your ATSU email if an email is required
  • Do not use your ATSU password - that will change regularly, and the one for your personal ID will not. If you use something different, you will be less likely to forget it

Later Use Instructions

  • Login using your ATSU login and password
    • Note: Some resources will require this every time; most mobile resources will only require it when your ATSU login and password change
  • Login again using your personal ID for that resource

Downloadable Instructions for Creating Specific Personal Accounts

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