PubMed Tutorial

This online lecture and tutorial provides the basics of searching and accessing articles through PubMed, an online database of publications for health and the life sciences.

Scientific Communication
Scientific Literature Search
Lynn Kysh, MLIS

Information Services Librarian, Norris Medical Library, Keck School of Medicine of USC

About this Resource

This video tutorial shows medical students and researchers how to use the PubMed online database tools to search through more than 23 million article and book citations from health science literature. A lecturer from the Norris Medical Library provides an overview of PubMed's content and resources. She discusses strategies for effective search on PubMed, including function of Automatic Term Mapping, and the use of advanced tools like MeSH (Medical Subject Headings), a controlled vocabulary. Also covered is use of filters to narrow down search results. Because PubMed does not provide full text of the articles and books it cites, the lecturer shows researchers how to obtain complete articles with a USC library subscription, both online and in print, or through InterLibrary loan and journal websites.

Course Syllabus/Topics

  • Introduction to PubMed
  • PubMed Search Tools and Strategies
  • Advanced Search using MeSH
  • Using Search Results and Filters
  • Anatomy of a PubMed Citation
  • How to Access Full Text of Articles


No. In addition to K Scholars, this course is open to faculty, clinicians, community health workers, fellows, post-docs, TL1 and F trainees, as well as medical, OT/PT, pharmacy and other students who intend to conduct research.

NIH Funding Acknowledgment: Important - All publications resulting from the utilization of SC CTSI resources are required to credit the SC CTSI grant by including the NIH funding acknowledgment and must comply with the NIH Public Access Policy.