In public health, you frequently will want to search across at least a few sources of content to get in-depth information on a variety of aspects of a particular topic. For example, you will want to use academic journals (which are peer-reviewed) to get reputable, scholarly information as well as newspaper articles to get up to date with current events or to learn more about what is going on in a very specific region.
Generally speaking, databases use Boolean logic, so create an exhaustive list of keywords and be familiar with Boolean logic (see side box at lower right) before you start consulting the resources listed below.
Boolean logic uses the following terms to describe topics containing multiple concepts: AND, OR, NOT
All library databases and even Google and Google Scholar use Boolean logic, so if you can master your search terms as well as the best Boolean logic connectors, you will have more relevant search results
Additionally, you will get more precise results if you enclose phrases in quotes ("alternative medicine") and if you group your synonyms in parentheses, such as: (narcotics OR opiates OR "prescription drug") AND addiction AND (treatments OR interventions)