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UMass Amherst Libraries

PUBHLTH 450 Comparative Health Care Systems - David Chin

resources to help with your Final Paper

Search Examples

Information on health policy issues like the health care systems you are looking at in this course, is often published in public policy, business, or other social science databases. I find the Discovery Search, which is the default search on the UMass Amherst Libraries homepage and searches many databases across disciplines, to be the best option when looking at these topics.

You can start by just typing in keywords on your topic, as I did in this example. However, I got over 44,000 results, so some refinement was needed! 

search example: health care system comparison

At the top of your search results page, you will have multiple lines to build your search. (You can also jump right to this using the Advanced Search link on the homepage.)

To focus my search, I decided that I want results that use the exact phrase "health care system" not just those three words anywhere. Here is an image of how I used the multiple search lines to modify my search:

This small modification reduced my search results to about 5,900. You could further refine your search by adding specifics about what you want to compare, as I did in this example by adding a third line to limit to items dealing with funding or cost:

sample search example

Finding Full Text

When you find an article you want, you can click on the UMLinks logo to get the full text.

UMLinks will find the full text online if it is available in any of the databases UMass has access to.

It will also search the library catalog to see if the library has it in print.

If an article or book is unavailable at UMass Amherst, current and retired UMass Amherst faculty and staff, and current students can get it using our Interlibrary Loan service. There will be a link to Interlibrary Loan when you use the UMLinks button.

More about Interlibrary Loan

To log into Interlibrary Loan use your UMass NetID and password (same as what you use for SPIRE and Moodle or Blackboard).

The first time you use Interlibrary Loan, you will be prompted to fill out a profile form, so we know who you are and how to contact you when your item arrives.

A couple of tips: the Interlibrary Loan profile form will ask for your library barcode. You can leave this field blank, even though it looks like it is a required field. The profile form also asks you to choose a campus pickup location. This does not mean you have to come to campus to retrieve your articles! All article requests are filled electronically.

After completing the profile, you should then see a pre-populated article request form. Make sure all the required fields are completed (sometimes they don't all transfer to the form), then submit it and usually in 1-2 business days you'll get an email that your article has arrived! The email will include a link into the Interlibrary Loan system, where your article PDF will be available to print or download.