Med Student Guide to AHSL


in another browser window to work through this tutorial side by side.

Welcome to UAHSL!

UAHSL logo

This tutorial will introduce you to resources you can immediately use to research topics for your Clinical Reasoning course (formerly Case-based Instruction or CBI) and general background information.

The University of Arizona Health Sciences Home Page (UAHSL) page to your right is a fully functional website you will be guided in using. Follow the instructions in this frame, and use the arrows at the bottom to navigate through the tutorial.

You can monitor your progress in the bar below. Use the TOC icon   icon at the top to skip to the various sections.

You can also click on any of the images to enlarge them.


Many of you will undoubtedly Google each medical term  that is unfamiliar to you and use commonly relied-upon sources like Wikipedia to quickly look things up. A recent study showed that 9 out of 10 articles about the top 10 most costly conditions in the United States contained significant errors as determined by comparison with peer-reviewed and evidence-based literature.[1]

It is important to develop good life-long learning habits right from day one of medical school. Becoming adept at searching primary sources and evidence-based secondary sources  will be an invaluable skill that will serve you well all throughout your medical careers.


Textbook Databases

We have three excellent collections of textbook databases

1. AccessMed|AccessPharm|AccessSurg

2. ClinicalKey

3. STAT!Ref

Let's explore these briefly one by one.


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Mouse over Top Resources

 Top Resources


Click AccessMed|AccessPharm|AccessSurg

Click on the AccessMedicine link or icon:

Access Medicine icon

Search melanoma by typing it into the universal search box.


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How many results did you get?



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What does Fitzpatrick's Color Atlas and Synopsis of Clinical Dermatology list as one of the recognized precursors of melanoma?

(Note that book titles are listed under chapter titles)


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By searching using the universal search bar, you will get results from the many textbooks in AccessMedicine as well as from its other resources, including Images, Patient Education and others.

If you only want to search one, or just a few, textbooks, click on the Advanced Search tab to the right of the search bar.

Advances search icon

Check the boxes next to:
Fitzpatrick's Color Atlas and Synopsis of Clinical Dermatology
Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine


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Type melanoma into the Search Readings box. Make sure to type this into the correct box, otherwise you will search all of AccessMedicine's content again (see circled area in illustration below).

Search readings

How many results did you get?


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If you want to search the entire Access series including AccessPharmacy and AccessSurgery,

1. click on the McGraw-Hill Medical Tab in the very topmost dark grey navigation bar (left side) and

2. then the red Medical arrow and search away!

 ssearching all of Access Medicine



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Return to the UAHSL home page by clicking on the following link:

A second excellent textbook database (with almost 1200 textbooks!) is ClinicalKey, which also offers access to journals, practice guidelines, patient education materials, drug monographs and videos.

1. Mouse over Top Resources
2. Click ClinicalKey


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To browse or search through the selection of textbooks available on ClinicalKey, select  Browse  > Books, as pictured. 

Clinical Key: Browse Books



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From the more than 1,000 textbooks available in ClinicalKey, you can now filter, or narrow your selection by clicking on your choices in the left hand grey column:

Browse Books Filter in Clinical Key


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Or, you can type in the name of a book you know you want to search; or use the alphabetical index to locate it:

find a book in Clinical Key



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Locate the book Williams Textbook of Endocrinology.

In the "Search this Book" box, type in the term hypothyroidism

Search this book



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If you typed the name Styne, you are correct!

Notice that there is additional content in the right hand column giving you an overview of this topic from a different textbook.



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Return to the main search page by clicking the ClinicalKey icon in the upper left-hand corner of the page.

Return to central search page




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You can also simply enter your search term or terms in the central search box and filter later:

Main search bar in clinical key

 downward arrow

Clinical Key filters



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To bookmark chapters or articles, as well as to save and use images in presentations, you will need to create your own account within ClinicalKey.

Create an account by clicking Register in the upper right hand corner and filling out the form. (For security, don't use your Net ID and password for these within-database accounts.)

Register for account


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Be sure to explore the many other features in ClinicalKey. Many are summarized on the following ClinicalKey web page (will open in new window).

No harm is associated with clicking on the many links within these resources, and you never know what you will discover.

Using Stat!Ref

1 of 3Return to the UAHSL home page by clicking on the following link:


A third textbook database to which UAHSL subscribes is STAT!Ref which you can also find by mousing over "Top Resources" on our home page and scrolling down.

Using Stat!Ref

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Books are listed in alphabetical order by title.

To quickly get to a book you know, say, Guide to Laboratory and Diagnostic Tests, click on the A-Z tab.


A-Z tab-Stat REF

Scroll to the book Guide to Laboratory and Diagnostic Tests - 3rd Ed. (2014) 

Click on the Green Arrow at the end of the title.

Select guide


Using Stat!Ref

3 of 3Type potassium into the search bar.
Be sure to click Search within this title just below the search bar to avoid searching all the books.
Search within this title

What does the book GUIDE TO LABORATORY AND DIAGNOSTIC TESTS - 3rd Ed. (2014) list as the normal range for Potassium in an infant? (Hint: click on the first option.)


Using UpToDate

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Return to our home page by clicking on the following link:

UpToDate is a widely used and comprehensive point-of-care resource that you can think of as an online textbook that is being constantly updated. Its chapters are called topics

We know you now know how to quickly navigate to this site from our "Top Resources" drop down menu.

 Go to UpToDate now

Using UpToDate

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Search abdominal pain. 

In the left hand panel, limit your search to pediatric patients.

UpToDate limits

Using UpToDate

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Click on the appropriate Topic on your present UpToDate page to answer the following question.


True or False?

Constipation is a common cause of acute abdominal pain in children.


Using UpToDate

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You will definitely want to create a personal account within UpToDate as this will allow you to download and use the UpToDate Mobile App on your iPads or smart phones. It has a very useful and user-friendly interface.

Register by clicking on the link in the upper right hand corner of any UpToDate page.

Register link for UpToDate

You can now download the app on your mobile device and link to the account you just created. Here are more detailed instructions:

Get UpToDate Anywhere & Mobile App (for UA/UAHN users)


You have successfully completed this tutorial. 
Thanks for your attention. Hopefully you have been introduced to some resources that will help you throughout medical school. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact your library liaison to the College of Medicine:

Carol L. Howe, MD, MLS