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Physical Therapy Research: Start Here!

Students in Introduction to Physical Therapy will find this guide especially helpful.


Welcome to the research guide for Physical Therapy. Use the tabs above to find journal articles, books and other useful resources. 

Research Basics

 Research Tips

  • Summarize Topic: Determine the terms for the patient's condition. For example: Exercise for patients with ankylosing spondylitis.

  •  Keywords, Terms & Phrase:  Search for journal articles using keywords, synonyms, phrases that describe the condition. When searching databases or the Web, enclose phrases in quotes, "ankylosing spondylitis". If acronyms are used such as VAC search also the full-name in quotes: "vacuum assisted closure"

  • Set Limits: Article databases allow you to limit your search results in various ways. Some limits include:
  • language
  • type of publication (case study, clinical trials, articles)
  • full-text
  • gender, age groups
  • published date
  • Word Truncation: Examine each term for various forms of its root. Most databases use the symbol * or # at the end of the root. For example measur* will retrieve: measuring and measurement. Use the database's Help tab for further instructions.

How to...

PTA Research Guide

Medical Dictionaries