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NURS MSN NP School of Nursing Library Instruction Session Spring 2024

Library resources to support the M.S.N. Online degree program at SLU's Trudy Busch Valentine School of Nursing.

PubMed (through SLU!)

PubMed is the: 

PubMed vs. MEDLINE vs. PMC

PubMed has three main components:

  • MEDLINE is the largest component of PubMed and consists primarily of citations from journals selected for MEDLINE; articles indexed with MeSH (Medical Subject Headings).  Citations only; articles are available via image of findit@slu button
  • PMC is a full text archive that includes articles from journals reviewed and selected by NLM for archiving (current and historical), as well as individual articles collected for archiving in compliance with funder policies. Open to the Public.
  • Bookshelf is a collections of citations for books with some individual chapters available.

Be sure to access PubMed via the SLU link--otherwise, your searches will not be tied to the SLU collections.


  • use Advanced Search for Boolean and/or for nested searching
  • add the phrase "theoretical models" or use the search string (model OR theory OR theoretical)
  • use MeSH link at the footer of the Advanced Search to utilize MeSH
  • Results default to Best Match (Relevance)
  • PubMed searches differently from other databases.  It will default to ATM (Automatic Term Mapping) Searching.  PubMed will take what is entered into the search box and attempts to interpret them and map them to the appropriate MeSH Terms.
    • In most everyday or casual searches, the ATM feature will help your search by not requiring you to put as many terms into the search box or build more complex search queries. 
    • Sometimes the ATM process can go in an unexpected or undesired direction.  It's important to understand roughly how the database is interpreting your search, how to investigate any issues, and how to potentially turn this feature off or otherwise control it. 
    • ATM is turned off by using a specific field code, using quotation marks, or by truncating.


PubMed Search

Image of PubMed Search