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Searching for & evaluating tests, measures (Tutorials)

These short modules are under 5 minutes each and provide tips and techniques to find tests and measures and their evaluation.

Searching for & evaluating measures in CINAHL (4.53m)

This video introduces searching for tests & measures in CINAHL, a key nursing database. Included are strategies such as refining by Source Type, using the Instrumentation field, and searching with subject headings.

Transcript: Searching for & evaluating measures in CINAHL

Hi, welcome to our second video which will cover searching for and evaluating tests and measures in CINAHL.

For more information about using CINAHL, see our series of tutorials at this link.

We will be looking at three searching strategies in CINAHL to find both tests, as well as critical information about 

First we need to access CINAHL which we will do from the UBC Library homepage.

Choosing the indexes and databases tab, we can type CINAHL and then search.

Clicking on the link will take us into the database.

Our first searching strategy is to refine by Source Type.

We will choose the type Research Instruments

Research Instruments are records created by CINAHL staff that give us a thorough summary of the test or measure, including its purpose, population, variables measured, and the name of the original study where the test first appeared.

Let's use an example topic we would like to find 
a test for.

We can search for a topic such as pain.

For the moment, make sure the Suggested Subject Terms button is off, although we will be using it later in the video.

Searching for this will give us tons of results but we are interested only in Research Instruments, which we can filter on the left 
side, scrolling down to Source Types and click Research Instruments.

If you don't see it, click Show More. Choosing this will give us all the instrument records about pain. From here we can learn more about a specific test to see if one might be useful for our work. 

The second strategy is to change the search dropdown to use the Instrumentation (IN) field. This field contains names of tests used in a study. It can give you clues of tests that might be appropriate for your work and how they've been used in other studies.

In this example we will search for the APGAR test. Let's type APGAR into the search field and use the drop down menu to select 
Instrumentation. These results will have either used or assessed this test in the article and may be the only test, or maybe one of many.

We can see that under the Instrumentation field, both the APGAR score for as well as another scale was used.

Note that when you're searching for scales, that may have many different spellings or codes to try to use the most generic spelling will use a wildcard search.

Our final way of searching CINAHL for tests and measures is to use subject headings. To brush up on your knowledge of subject 
headings check out our video in the CINAHL tutorials.

There are three subject headings you will look at specifically. Here are images of the subject headings and some of their narrower terms that maybe also explored for further refined searching.

In this example, let's take our first subject heading reliability AND validity and combining it with our topic pain.

For a second, make sure Suggest Subject Terms is chosen on the top, then type your subject heading. In this case, spelling is important!

Choose a subject heading from the list and click Search Database. Always enter your chosen topic, which is pain. Click Search. And in this case we will combine the two searches with AND.

This will give us results combining reliability and validity AND pain. A smaller subset of results that will be relevant to our research.

We can further limit our results by using the publication date limiter on the left hand side.

Choosing a more recent set of results may be more relevant to our work.

Thanks for watching! In this video we looked at three search strategies for finding tests and information about tests in CINAHL. Next up we will look at the Medline database.