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Public Health Research Guide

  • Find Background Info
  • Find Books
  • Find Articles
  • Find Data and Statistics
  • Citing Sources

Find Background Info

Background sources, such as specialized encyclopedias and dictionaries, are an essential piece of the research process. They can help you:

  • Gather information about your topic and understand the scope of the research.
  • Locate reliable sources and clarify keywords.
  • Pinpoint important authors, texts, ideas, and key words about the research area—knowing what the primary phrases and concepts are will help you a lot as you are searching through library databases and online sources.

Global Issues: Health and Medicine (Gale)

Global Issues: Health and Medicine integrates international news, global viewpoints, reference materials, country information, primary source documents, videos, and statistics. The Health and Medicine page helps you gather useful background information in the field.

Search Global Issues: Health and Medicine (Gale)

Health and Medicine (Gale)

Health and Medicine contains periodicals and reference book content designed for both nursing and allied health students, as well as consumer health researchers.

Search Health and Medicine (Gale)

Credo Reference

Credo Reference is a multi-publisher collection of high-quality reference titles covering everything from the arts to astronomy, law to literature, and science to Shakespeare. Available titles also include a range of multimedia options, including thousands of high-quality diagrams, photographs, maps, and audio files.

Search Credo Reference

Public Health books in Credo

Find Books

Print and e-books are valuable sources for academic research. They will help you gain an overview of your topic and often contain in-depth information about the scholarship or history of research on a subject. Some books are written by single authors, while others include essays or chapters by multiple scholars within a discipline. Don’t let the length of books intimidate you because you don’t need to read them from cover to cover. Look at the table of contents and index to find the sections that are relevant to your work.

Find Books Using GriffinSearch

GriffinSearch is a good starting place if you are looking for books, journal articles, films, and other materials available in the library. In addition to searching the Giovale Library catalog for physical materials, GriffinSearch finds e-books and articles from several of our databases. To get started, search by keyword or type in the title of a book here:


WorldCat lets you search for books, articles, videos, and other material that are available in libraries worldwide. If you are doing in-depth research on a topic and are considering requesting resources through Interlibrary Loan, WorldCat can help you discover resources that might not be in the Giovale Library collection.

Search WorldCat

Interlibrary Loan (ILL)

Interlibrary Loan is a service where patrons of one library can borrow books and other materials, and access journal articles that are owned by another library.

Explore Interlibrary Loan Materials

Utah Academic Library Consortium

Giovale Library participates in the Utah Academic Library Consortium (UALC) and Westminster University students have reciprocal circulation privileges at UALC partner libraries. Each UALC library has different circulation policies, but all require a current, valid, legal photo identification and proof of current enrollment at Westminster. Some libraries may also require other verification methods, so it is recommended that you contact the library you are interested in for details.

Explore the Consortium

Popular Titles and Featured Texts

Graphic Public Health : A Comics Anthology and Road Map

Graphic Public Health: A Comics Anthology and Road Map

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Indigenous Public Health : Improvement Through Community-Engaged Interventions

Indigenous Public Health : Improvement Through Community-Engaged Interventions

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Unwell Women: Misdiagnosis and Myth in a Man-Made World

Unwell Women: Misdiagnosis and Myth in a Man-Made World

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Black Women and Public Health : Strategies to Name, Locate, and Change Systems of Power

Black Women and Public Health: Strategies to Name, Locate, and Change Systems of Power

Learn more

Find Articles

The Giovale Library provides access to a number of subject databases that you can use to find journal articles on topics within a specific discipline or field of study. The databases listed on this page are those that are most useful for finding research published in the field of public health. 

Public Health Database (ProQuest)

Public Health Database has been designed as an ideal starting point for research and public health information.

Search Public Health Database (ProQuest)


GriffinSearch is a good starting place if you are looking for books, journal articles, films, and other material available in the library. In addition to searching the Giovale Library catalog for physical materials, GriffinSearch finds e-books and articles from several of our databases.

Search GriffinSearch


PubMed is the NLM's premier bibliographic database covering the fields of medicine, nursing, dentistry, veterinary medicine, the health care system, and the preclinical sciences. PubMed contains bibliographic citations and author abstracts from biomedical journals published in the United States and 70 other countries. Coverage is worldwide, but most records are from English-language sources or have English abstracts.

Search PubMed

Consumer Health Database (ProQuest)

Consumer Health Database includes journals and magazines covering a wide range of health topics, from sports injuries to women's health, from food and nutrition to midwifery, from eye care to dentistry.

Search Consumer Health Database (ProQuest)

ScienceDirect: Health and Life Sciences (Elsevier)

ScienceDirect is a leading full text scientific database offering journal articles and book chapters. Journals are guided by eminent editorial boards and articles are rigorously peer-reviewed. Books on ScienceDirect cover 24 subject collections across disciplines such as biochemistry, genetics and molecular biology, chemistry, clinical medicine, engineering, and environmental science.

Search ScienceDirect: Health and Life Sciences (Elsevier)

Find Data and Statistics

You may want to use data sets for your research, below is a list of organizations that allow you to search for data. As always, if you can’t find what you are looking for, contact the library.

United States Census Data

The Census Bureau is the leading source of quality data about the United States' people and economy.

Search United States Census Data

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Data and Statistics

Find public data sets related to public health topics, including vaccination, environmental factors, communicable diseases, and more.

Search CDC Data

National Center for Health Statistics

As the nation’s principal health statistics agency, the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) compiles statistical information to guide actions and policies to improve the health of the population. NCHS is a unique public resource for health information—a critical element of public health and health policy. 

Search NCHS

Pew Research Center

A nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world. The Pew Research Center conducts public opinion polling, demographic research, content analysis and other data-driven social science research.

Search Pew Research Center

Google Dataset Search

Dataset Search enables users to find datasets stored across the Web through a simple keyword search. The tool surfaces information about datasets hosted in thousands of repositories across the Web, making these datasets universally accessible and useful.

Search Google Dataset

Kids Count

Provides data on the health and well-being of children and families in the United States.

Search Kids Count

World Health Organization

Includes data & statistics, reports, country profiles, and fact sheets. Organized by topics and countries.

Search World Health Organization

Utah Data

Access State of Utah datasets.

Search Utah Data

While not a data source, you can find many data resources from the U.S. government.


Citing Sources

Citation Resources

Properly citing your sources shows that you’ve done research to become knowledgeable about your topic and helps you avoid plagiarism. Explore citation resources to learn how to correctly cite sources based on style.

Need help with your research?

Get in touch with:

Katherine Paterson

Liaison Librarian for Public Health

Schedule an Appointment

Librarians are happy to answer questions via email, phone, or in-person.

Contact Katherine with a question or to schedule a research help appointment.

Faculty: Contact Katherine to suggest edits to this research guide.

Chat with a Librarian

Use the chat box below to ask the library staff a question. If chat is unavailable or we don’t respond quickly, please use the email form on our Get Research Help page and a library staff member will contact you as soon as we are available.