Embase Quick Guide at Walden Library
Visual: Embase database search page
Narration: Hi this is Julie from Walden library, and today I'm going to talk about Embase. Embase is spelled e-m-b-a-s-e and is one of our more unusual databases. It works a little bit differently than some of the others, so I thought I'd give you a tour. To find Embase you can go to the library homepage and click databases A to Z and choose E for Embase. That is the quickest way to find any database when you know what the name is.
Visual: Embase default search screen with four rows; each row has a drop-down menu with options
When you come into Embase it will show you four search boxes which is great, but only the first one is labeled quick search. To make it work the way we're used to using databases [at Walden Library], I change each of the lines to Quick Search, so that it is looking primarily in the title, abstract, subject headings, and will give me a good search here.
Visual: automated suggestions show beneath the box while typing
When you start typing a word in, you will see some pop-up suggestions. You can use the pop-up suggestions or you can try your own words - sometimes it'll give you a little different results. When you are using a word you can use the standard truncation notation. For example, if I type nurs* [asterisk], the asterisk is a wild card And that will pick up nurses, nursing, nursing students, things like that.
Visual: date limiter on the Embase home page, lower-left side
We do have a limit here on the home page in the bottom left to include certain publication years, and I'm going to pick the last five years. And then on the search button it shows you a preliminary results number. When I run the search itself it will show me-- by default it'll show us the most recent first.
Visual: radio buttons on right side default to Publication Year; change to Relevance
The default sort is publication year and here on the right at the top of the hit list we can change that to relevance. And sorting a search by relevance tends to make it look a little bit better.
Visual: first citation with source line highlight to show page numbers indicate a Supplement to the journal
One of the things that you may notice about results from this database is they have a lot of supplements in them. Supplements are things like conference abstract, poster presentations, short things. This is good if you're looking for grey literature but if you're not one of the best things you could do is come over here to the left side where we have all kinds of limits.
Visual: left navigation on results page, expand bar for Publication Types
If you go to the limit for publication types you can pick Articles, review articles, perhaps articles in press, but you can avoid those conference, abstract, editorials, things that are not going to qualify as peer reviewed scholarly literature. And that will cut down your results list.
Visual: left navigation on results page; expand Study Types bar
A couple of other things you can do here in the results on the left are study types. If you expand the study types bar in the left column you can pick all of your qualitative studies, your quantitative studies, you can pick only systematic reviews if you prefer from here. But each time you pick something in your limits area you will need to click the Apply button at the top of the list to make it go.
Visual: left navigation on results page, expand Sources bar at the top
The third thing that I use quite a lot in Embase is the sources button at the very top of the results filters, because usually Embase is going to be an add-on database, a supplemental database for you to supplement your gold box or your Thoreau search. Medline is [included] in those searches.
Visual: Sources area in left navigation, with Embase side selected in orange
So I can take out the Medline results from this search that combines Medline and Embase by clicking on the Embase side of the source and then clicking Apply. And then notice that everything gets appended to my history here at the top of the screen. I have 22 results left.
Visual: scroll through results list
And then you can see some of these may be journals that you haven't seen yet, and then some of them may be things that you have seen but they just come up in a different way. So this is a great way to flesh out a literature review where you've covered the majority of the literature but you want to see if anything else has come through.
Visual: one of the citations does not include a link to full text
When you don't see a view full text list here you can take the title and frequently find the article through Google Scholar. That's another way to do it. But oftentimes when there is no full text there you will go into it and notice that it's a translated title. So the article itself might not be in English. Sometimes you just have to go into them. The indexing for these types of articles is a little bit irregular, sometimes you only get the abstract in English and sometimes you get the full article side by side in English and another language.
Visual: Ask a Librarian page
So if you have any more trouble using Embase you can feel free to go to any library page and go up to Ask A Librarian and give us a shout by email or make a doctoral research appointment and we will help you find what you need.