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Health Information @ Himmelfarb: How to Search

How Do I Search?

The Health Information @ Himmelfarb search box executes a keyword search across all the searchable content indexed by the service. Enter your search term in the search box and select the most appropriate search scope with the down arrow next to the magnifying glass.  Scopes available are:

  • Articles + Himmelfarb Catalog
  • (just) Articles 
  • Himmelfarb Catalog
  • Online Access
  • Articles + GW & Consortium Catalog

Health Information @ Himmelfarb finds your word or phrase in the title, subject headings, table of contents, abstract or full-text of all the content in the selected scope.

Relevancy ranking factors the number of times your terms occur in the matched item, number of times that item was retrieved previously, the type of material and date published to sort results. Himmelfarb boosts relevancy for books and more recently published items. If you want article retrieval only, use the Articles scope.

How Do I Narrow My Search Results?

You can limit results retrieved by using the Refine Results options on the left side of the search results page:

  • Publication Date limits retrieval to a range of years 
  • Content Type limits to just books, or dissertations, or Newspaper articles, etc. 
  • Availability limits to open access, Peer Reviewed literature, or just online full-text results.

Checking the box for Expand My Results will include items that are not subscribed content of Himmelfarb Library. Full-text may not be available.

Searching Beyond Himmelfarb

You can select to search the contents of all the libraries in the Washington Research Libraries Consortium (WRLC) by switching the search scope. Use the down arrow on the right side of the Health Information @ Himmelfarb search box and select Articles + GW & Consortium Catalog to include books and media at the other WRLC libraries, like Georgetown, American, and Howard.  It also includes materials at the other GW libraries.

To request items from a WRLC library, see Requesting Items for instructions on placing Consortium Loan Service (CLS) requests.

Beyond Basic Search

 Use the Advanced Search option to search for multiple concepts at once or search a specific field like title or author. Click on Advanced Search next to the Search Box.

Use the Journal search option on the top menu if searching for a specific journal title. This is the best option when looking for a one word journal title (ex. Cancer or Blood).


What Am I Searching?

Health Information @ Himmelfarb is a comprehensive discovery tool for the library’s resources. It includes most of the library’s subscription content (journals and articles and online books) as well as records for the library’s physical collections (print books and journals, equipment, and physical media like DVDs).

Should I Always Start My Search Here?

Health Information @ Himmelfarb does not offer the precision searching of many of the library’s specialized databases, like PubMed or Scopus. If you require an in depth search or are doing a systematic review, contact our reference librarians ( or 202-994-2850) who can advise you on where to search and how.

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