The course is aimed at doctoral students and researchers in the health sciences, seeking to increase their knowledge of effective and explorative information search tools and strategies as well as handling the information and publishing their work in relevant journals. The course uses a mixture of lectures and hands-on training to improve the skills of the students. The training sessions will allow the students to use their own information needs.

The course will cover the following topics:
Health scientific literature searching: Starting from a theoretical view on research topics in connection with search strategies, the student will learn to use tools such as PICO to formulate structured search queries for use in bibliographic literature databases such as PubMed and Embase. Also the differences between various health-related databases will be discussed, allowing the student to choose appropriate sources rather than relying on just one. As examples of useful databases, there will be training in PubMed and Embase, using structured queries with the MeSH and EMTREE tools. The students will learn to document literature searches and create a protocol in accordance with PRISMA and the QUOROM-statement. Other databases, such as CINAHL and PsycInfo, can be included in the training sessions. The final part of the topic will cover the acquisition of full-text documents from the results in above mentioned databases.

Reference handling:
Inserting and formatting references in a manuscript can be tedious work if done manually. Tools like RefWorks and Mendeley can automate this process and also help the student keep track of PDF’s and papers to read. The course will offer introduction and training in either of these tools.

Publication strategies:
The course will conclude with lectures and group work on a number of topics concerning publication strategies. The topics will include open access, selecting journals for publishing, considerations about titles, abstracts and keywords, indicators of research impact, such as the journal impact factor and citation counts and scientific misconduct.

Some reading previous to the course should be expected.

Masters degree in relevant area (medicine, nursing, psychiatry or similar). Primarily intended for PhD students.

Following the course the students are expected to hand in a short assignment with reflections on the key topics of the course. The assignment will be further elaborated during the course.

Conni Skrubbeltrang,
Medical Library Aalborg University Hospital

Conni Skrubbeltrang, Marianne Nielsen and Jens Peter Andersen


Spring: March 20, 21, 2013

Aalborg University Hosptial
Forskningens Hus
Sdr. Skovvej 15
room 405
9000 Aalborg

Zip code:


Number of seats:

March 1, 2013