NURS 1171 (Mrs. Patrice McLain): Theories & Concepts of Professional Nursing

The purpose of this guide is to help you find sources in Cornette Library useful for completing your Nursing 1171 assignments. First we'll look at reference sources, then explore databases you can use to find journal articles, and finally turn to tools for finding books.

Reference Sources

A library's Reference collection is a good place to start research on a topic. The sources you find there can provide information on people; definitions of words; drug dosages and side effects; illustrations of the human skeleton, muscles, and organs; and other nursing/medical topics. This information can prove useful later when you search for journal articles or books. You may not check out the books you find in Reference, but you can make photocopies using your Buffalo Gold Card. If you need assistance, ask at the Reference Desk on the first floor of Cornette Library.

Print Reference Sources

Reference sources (basic information sources), including encyclopedias and dictionaries (both general and subject), statistical publications, almanacs, handbooks, and directories, provide brief factual information. The call numbers for nursing-related Reference books begin with the letter R. Ask at the Reference Desk for help finding appropriate reference sources for your topic.

Online Reference Sources

Health & Wellness Resource Center
Includes up-to-date reference material and full-text articles. Features a medical dictionary, medical encyclopedia, and drug finder.


Journal Articles

Cornette Library provides access to a number of online resources to help you find journal articles. Some provide the full text of articles, while others may give only the citation and in some cases an abstract or short summary of the article. Some of these resources are general in nature, covering many subject areas. Others focus on particular subjects like nursing. Since some of the resources listed below include articles from both magazines and journals, you must learn to distinguish between these two publications. When you find articles, evaluate them to make sure you are getting valid information.

While most of our online resources include the full-text of the journal articles they index, some only provide citations. Once you have reviewed the citations to determine which journal articles you want, search by journal title to determine whether the Library subscribes to the journals you need and whether they are available in paper, microform, or online. If the Library does not have the journal or issue, you may order the article through Interlibrary Loan.

All of our online resources are available from off-campus as well as in the library. You will be asked to login: use your Buff Advisor username (for example, js123456) and your Buff Advisor password (for example, buffaloes).

Citations, includes links to full-text in all areas of nursing and allied health
Academic Search Complete
Cross-disciplinary database. Offers options of limiting results to items from peer-reviewed journals, and full-text item.
Health & Wellness Resource Center
Full-text, includes a medical encyclopedia, medical dictionary, drug & herb information, and both popular and academic articles.
Medline (EBSCO)
Citations and full-text for journal articles in the medical sciences, including nursing. Much more full-text than the free version, PubMed
Nursing Collection (Your Journals@Ovid)
Full-text of the 39 nursing journals in Nursing Collections 1 and 2. Limited number of simultaneous users, so please LOGOFF when done searching.

SFX logo Logo

Most of our database will include the SFX logo logo on the options for each search result. Clicking this link will open a popup window with several options for retrieving the full-text of the document. One or more of these choices will be shown:

If you would like more information about the SFX logo feature, please see the tutorial Using SFX to Link to Articles

If you need assistance with searching journals or databases, ask at the Reference Desk (first floor) or the Periodicals Desk (second floor). You may also call the Reference Desk at 651-2215 during the hours Cornette Library is open or use our Ask a Librarian service.



Books may provide recent information or historical perspective on a topic. Because of their length, they can provide more in-depth coverage than reference sources and journal articles.

Cornette Library's Online Catalog

Cornette Library's online catalog lists books found throughout the Library. The catalog is accessible by clicking on the words Library Catalog at the top of most Cornette Library Web pages. Books located on the Library's Loan Shelves can be checked out from the Circulation Desk using your Buffalo Gold card. As with Reference books, the call numbers for many books on nursing topics begin with the letter R. When you find books, evaluate them to be sure you are getting valid information. Remember you'll need current information for most topics, so check the publication date.


Citing Your Sources

Why must I cite the sources I use for research projects?

APA Style

A copy of the 5th and 6th editions of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association is kept at the Reference Desk. Additional assistance with citing electronic publications is available from the APA online site, which is accessible from Cornette Library's Citation Basics page.


Your Comments

There's always room for improvement!

If you have suggestions for improvements or would like to comment on something you found especially useful about this course guide, please email Linda Chenoweth. Your comments and suggestions are appreciated.