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Health: CINAHL Searching

How Do I Use AND / OR in a Search?

CINAHL is set-up to combine search terms together using AND / OR in a search. To understand what happens to your search results when you use AND / OR, read the guide below. 

What is CINAHL?

(Cumulated Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature) is the authoritative resource for nursing and allied health professionals, students, educators and researchers.

  • Over 2,900 journals and publications
  • Began in1982
  • Over 880,000 records
  • Includes journal articles, meeting abstracts, audiovisuals and dissertations.

Click CINAHL Plus with Full Text to begin searching the database.

Step-by-Step Guide to Searching CINAHL

Step 1: Enter your search terms into the search box. *CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE

Step 2: After hitting the green search button in CINAHL a list of suggested terms will be shown. To select the term that matches your research question read the scope note to make sure the definition matches what you are looking for (click on the icon to the right of the term). 

scope note

Step 3: If the definition matches your term, select the term by putting a check mark in the box next to it.

Step 4: Hit the green Search Database button (upper right-hand corner).

select the term and search database in CINAHL

Step 5: After hitting the Search Database button, your screen should look like the screen below. You will see your search term and a number of results with the results listed below with citation information (author, publication, year etc.).

search results in CINAHL

If you have more then 1 term that you would like to combine together to see the search results, repeat steps 1-5.

Step 6: After you have 2 search terms in your search history, you can then combine those searches together using AND or OR by selecting each term (box next to term) and choosing Search with AND or Search with OR at the top of the search history screen.

You will have a brand new search combining your 2 terms together with either OR or AND (see example below) with new results!


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