If you could pick a short phrase that describes the field of nursing, what would it be?
A true calling? Lifelong learning? Or, what did you get yourself into?
Whatever phrase you thought of, chances are ‘guessing game’ is definitely not one of them.
As a professional nurse, you read, interpret and evaluate information every day before you make a single decision or take any step. Whether you do that in a split second or spend hours in collaboration with other health team members, you know it’s because quality patient care is only as good as the existing evidence it comes from. Your role, then, is to identify the best evidence available and use your critical-thinking skills and clinical judgment to direct your practice. Simply put, the more reliable the information you get, the better the patient’s outcome.
Nursing research, fortunately, continues to evolve and reach new conclusions and implications for practice. As a professional nurse and student, finding that quality research is crucial as you continue to grow your skills. So when you need to locate sources for a course assignment or patient, where can you find evidence-based material that is “research” worthy?
As a student at Thomas Edison State University, you have free access to more than 5,400 journals and a variety of publications and databases, including the health database CINAHL Complete, by registering for a New Jersey State Library card. With this kind of easy access, you can review and evaluate thousands of hyper-specific nursing methods and findings, without sacrificing the validity, reliability and quality of your research.
What is CINAHL Complete?
CINAHL, or the Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature, is a premier health database with articles and publications from all allied health fields, along with its vast collection of nursing topics. Locate care plans, CEUs, practice guidelines, doctoral dissertations, research instruments and more, all while refining your search to include more specific results, like articles limited to evidence-based practice, clinical queries, nurse authors, nurse contributors, patient groups and more.
Additionally, citation tools within the database itself are available, as well as in most of the Library’s databases, making it easy to cite your sources without fear of plagiarism.
How Do I Access CINAHL?
As a student at Thomas Edison State University, the first step is to sign up for a New Jersey State Library card online, here. Anyone can use CINAHL in person within the State Library building without a library card, but you can access the database outside of the building and from your own home by using the barcode number on your library card to sign in.
To learn how to navigate CINAHL for your own nursing research, watch a recording of the NJSL’s webinar below or download the handouts for the class here, and take advantage of the helpful resources offered to you through the Library as a student at Thomas Edison State University.
For more information about citations, writing guides, tutorial resources, and getting a library card and more as a student, check out the Information Literacy for TESU Students Research Guide.
Written by Thomas Edison State University