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Writing Complex Search Strategies ***PARTICIPANTS: Please bring your laptops to this session

Date and Location




Saturday 21 September 2013 - 13:30 - 15:00
Contact persons and facilitators

Contact person

Michelle Fiander
Anna Noel-Storr


Anna Noel-Storr
Michelle Fiander
Target audience

Target audience

Information Specialists & Trials Search Co-ordinators

Is your workshop restricted to a specific audience or open to all Colloquium participants?


Level of knowledge required

Type of workshop

Type of workshop

Abstract text


Objectives: To present and discuss practical approaches to developing and optimising complex search strategies for health care interventions. Description: This session is directed at professional searchers--Information Scientists/Specialists, Trials Search Co-ordinators, Librarians, who develop search strategies for systematic reviews. Using sample topics from Cochrane Systematic Reviews, we will explore using and exploiting Medical Subject Headings, MeSH (NLM) and EMTREE (EMBASE). We will consider the differences between MeSH and EMTREE for the purposes of building and translating search strategies. OVID will be the assumed platform for Medline and EMBASE; Wiley for the Cochrane Central Database of Controlled Trials; and Ebsco for CINAHL. Pubmed will be discussed as an adjunct to searches of Medline, but will not be the focus of this session. Participants will be asked to register in advance and submit questions or comments related to challenges they have encountered when constructing search strategies. While the presenters will deliver information, we hope to also draw on experiences of attendees to inform and expand the methodology presented in this session. Late registrants will gladly be accepted, but questions/challenges posed in advance of the session may take precedence as discussion items.