Skip to main content

Physical Therapy Assistant: Articles

Guide by Kristin Snawder. Direct comments to

Article Databases

The best way to locate articles is through library databases.  Go to and look under the categories Health Sciences (DIT,DNH,EMS,HIM,HLT,MDL,NUR,OTA,PTH,RAD,ROC,RTH) to find a list of relevant databases.  Here are a few databases that you may find particularly helpful:

Find Journal by Title

Online Physical Therapy Journals

Search for Periodical Titles

Browse Periodicals by Subject

Periodical Types

Articles are published in periodicals, which is any type of publication published at a regular interval (weekly, monthly, quarterly). Periodical types include magazines, newspapers, trade publications, and scholarly journals which:

  • Provide detailed information about a specific aspect of a topic.
  • Report on events, issues, or scholarly research.
  • Are good sources for current or recent information.

Magazines, journals and newspapers typically do NOT provide a summary or overview of a topic.

More information on finding scholarly, peer-reviewed articles.

Search Tips

Select the most important 2-3 terms related to your topic.  Put the word AND between each new term; this tells the database to look for resources with ALL your terms.

collagen AND healing

Use quotation marks ( "  " ) around phrases (two or more words); this tells the database to look for the words in that specific order.

"fall prevention" AND "physical therapy"

Use an asterisk ( * ) to find multiple endings of one word.  Using therap* as a search term will include results that refer to therapy, therapies, theraputic.


What is a Database?

This video by Yavapai College Library in Prescott, Arizona demonstrates the different types of information found in Google versus library databases. 

Press the  icon located in the bottom right corner to watch the video in fullscreen mode.

CINAHL Advanced Search Tutorial