National Network of Libraries of Medicine
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Making PubMed Work For You


This class is intended to hone basic searching techniques and the ability to develop search strategies that will take advantage of the PubMed interface to MEDLINE. The course will explore various methods for searching the PubMed system. Topics covered include Automatic Term Mapping, Search Results, Similar articles, My NCBI, Searching with MESH, Journal searching, and Single Citation Matcher. This course will provide an overview of the system and demonstrate utilizing the features of PubMed to search effectively. The 3.5-hour in person version of the course provides the attendees with hands-on opportunities to practice their search techniques. The online course through an online course management system is four weeks. 

Course Materials


Participants will be able to:

  • Understand how PubMed translates the user's query into a MEDLINE search.
  • Be able to explain the interrelationship of the various files PubMed uses to create its interface to MEDLINE.
  • Formulate a search using PubMed that yields bibliographic retrieval relevant to the search query.
  • Utilize the various search options and interfaces available in PubMed to refine searching.
  • Understand the basic functions of features in PubMed.
  • Learn about resources to receive current information about NLM systems and acquire materials useful for MEDLINE searching.
Class Length: 
2.5 or 3.5 hours, 4 weeks
Course Developer(s):
Patricia Devine, Outreach & Communications Coordinator
Dana Abbey, Colorado/Community Engagement Coordinator
Kay Deeney, MLS, AHIP, Education & Outreach Librarian
Patricia Devine, Outreach & Communications Coordinator
Kate Flewelling, MLIS, Executive Director
Sarah Miles, MLIS, MA, Health Professions Coordinator
Tony Nguyen, ML..., MLIS, AHIP, Technology and Communications Coordinator
Terri Ottosen, ..., Outreach and Education Coordinator
Continuing Education:

The in person course has been approved for 2.5 or 3.5 hours of Medical Library Association Continuing Education Units. 3.5 CE hours are available for the online version.

This class is eligible for Consumer Health Information Specialization continuing education credit awarded by the Medical Library Association.

Past Classes

There are no archived recordings of this class