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Nursing and Allied Health: Searching CINAHL

Online Learning


Use the Cumulative Index for Nursing and Allied Health (CINAHL) database


  • Go to the NSU Libraries Home page,
  • Select Database Directory.
  • Select Nursing and Allied Health. 
  • CINAHL will be within the Nursing & Allied Health database group. 

Nursing or Allied Health, terminology must be exact


  • Click on CINAHL Headings at the top of the search screen
  • Click VIEW Tutorials on the screen.


Use the suggested term


Using the suggested term improves results retrieved:


The preferred term for Latino is Hispanic.  You receive more relevant results using the preferred term in your searching.


Finding too many articles indicates a poorly focused search


It is not unusual to retrieve too many articles, too few articles, or not exactly what you need. When that happens, you will need to refine your search. Just remember that the more limits you put on, the fewer results you will get. It is almost impossible to do a perfect search so  if more than half of your articles are relevant, you are doing it right. Remember that bibliographic records (non-full text) can be obtained through Interlibrary Loan (ILL) free of charge.

By following these steps you can improve your search strategy:

  • Focus your search terms using the preferred CINAHL headings.
  • Make sure that you have checked the Peer Reviewed box.
  • Specify a five year date range
  • Specify English language, human, has abstract, limit to the USA (undergraduates only)


Filters are also called limiters


  • Refine your results by using the advanced filter menu


Limiting your results:  Using the Advanced Search page


  • Limit the date to the last 5 years. Some publishers embargo the most current 12-18 months.
  • This allows you to see if your topic and terminology is current


Limit your search results using the filters or limiters on the advanced filter page or on left side of the results page (blue area)

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