OME Fellows: Medical Education Research Guide

Resources for searching for topics relevant to medical education

About PubMed

PubMed, developed by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), provides access to bibliographic citations to biomedical journal articles, including MEDLINE, and to additional life sciences journals. 

For more information, view our complete guide to PubMed.



Focus on health sciences

Use of controlled vocabulary (MeSH)

Indexes for geographic areas and ethnic groups

Unable to do phrase searching

If you use only MeSH terms to search:

you miss articles not yet indexed

PubMed: Search Tools

PubMed offers some advanced features to build your search:

Filters: Use filters to narrow your search results by date, language, article type, etc.

Building Blocks: Use Boolean logic (AND, OR, and NOT), search history, phrase searching, and truncation.

MeSH: An acronym for Medical Subject Headings; PubMed/MEDLINE uses MESH terms for indexing articles. 

Topic Specific Queries: Prefabricated searches that limit to specific topics (i.e. cancer, bioethics, therapy, alternative medicine)

PubMed: Manage Results

Display/Sort: Use the Display Settings menu to change the display format, the number of citations per page and the sort order of your results.

Send to: An menu option to send or copy PubMed records to a file, to the Clipboard, to Collections, to E-Mail, to order, to My Bibliography, or to a Citation manager program.

MyNCBI: A feature that allows you to save records and searches, and customize your results display with filters and other options.

PubMed: Search Tips



Truncation - Not advised in PubMed, interferes with its controlled vocabulary and will prohibit mapping to MeSH terms.



Display settings - View MeSH terms for an article in abstract view

Searching with tags - Limit your search by looking only for words that appear in the title using the [ti] or [title] tags Learn more about tags here


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