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BSN Resources: Home

This guide will assist you with searching for information in your BSN Health & Wellness courses.

Clinical reference tools

Annotated bibliography: Finding articles

Check out these places to search to search for research articles.


  1. You want to find research articles (evidence) that show your intervention has been successful for achieving your outcome.  In other words, instead of finding research that confirms something is a problem, but can you find research that shows your intervention is beneficial.  
  2. To find research articles, I would suggest using these options to help you get started.
    1. In CINAHL, look for the option on the advanced search page (the page you start on) to checkmark Research Article.
    2. In PubMed, look for the option for Clinical Queries on the homepage. 
  3. If your population relates to a certain age group, look for the option to limit by age group.  Each of the suggested databases has an option to limit to articles that include a certain age group.

Primary sources

Woman looking through a microscopePrimary sources are ones where you are hearing from someone directly involved with the information.  For example, the author of the article was the one who performed the research experiment.

Look for the Methods section in the article to see what method was used.  You want the methods section to indicate the author was the one doing the experiment and not analyzing the work of others.  If you do not see a methods section or the article title has something like literature review, systematic review, or meta-analysis in it, look for other options.  There is more information on primary sources here: You can also schedule an appointment with a librarian in Starfish for assistance.

APA help

Need help with APA formatting, references, and citations?  Check out the library's APA guide:  You can also schedule an appointment with a librarian in Starfish.

Writing assistance

Picture of people working together over a piece of written work.There are various writing assistance options available through PA College.

  • Writing Assistance (in Starfish): Schedule an appointment for assistance in Starfish.  You can select an available time that works into your schedule to meet with someone from our writing assistance team.
  • Drop-in tutoring: Check out this Academic Support calendar for drop-in tutoring sessions, which includes writing assistance.
  • Grammarly: Grammarly automatically detects grammar, spelling, punctuation, word choice, and style mistakes in your writing.  The Learning Commons provides access to the premium version of Grammarly, which you can find more information on here.‚Äč
  • Smarthinking (in Blackboard): This is an online tutoring service that provides on-demand tutoring in math, biology, A&P and more.  There is also an option where you can submit your writing to get feedback.  In Blackboard, look for the Smarthinking box under your list of courses.  See below for common questions of which option in Smarthinking to select.
    • APA help: Work with a Tutor or Career Coach -> Writing -> APA Formatting
    • Questions needing a nursing or health sciences content specialist: Submit My Writing -> Nursing Essays or Allied Health Essays (depends on subject area)
    • Help with grammar, mechanics, and formatting: Submit My Writing-> Grammar and Documentation Review
    • Help with a Microsoft PowerPoint presentation: Work with a Tutor or Career Coach -> Computers & Technology -> Microsoft PowerPoint
  • ESL support: You can schedule an appointment for ESL support in Starfish.   In Starfish, look for Academic ESL Support on the My Success Network page to pick a day and time for your appointment.


If you have any questions or issues accessing any of these services, please email:

Have a question? Ask me

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Amy Snyder
Learning Commons

Need more help?

Need some help finding articles?  Questions about APA formatting or citations?  Ask Amy, your class librarian, for assistance.


You can self-schedule an appointment in Starfish.

  1. Go to Blackboard or myPortal
  2. Click on Starfish
  3. This should take you to the My Success Network page. If not, choose My Success Network from the menu (look for the three lines on the top left to open the menu.)
  4. In the Health Sciences Library box, select schedule appointment.
Health Sciences Library - Seraph Learning Commons - Cooper Building - 850 Greenfield Road - Lancaster, PA 17601 - - (717 947-6022).PA Forward logo