Pathfinder: Mental Health

The following Pathfinder helps to find information related to Mental Health.

The Steps to Research and Writing a Paper offers more detailed information on researching and writing.

1. Start by locating resources that provide an overview of your topic.

This will help you define terms in that discipline and provide background information in your subject area. Encyclopedias, handbooks and subject specific dictionaries offer good places to start.

Some titles specifically related to mental health are:

Ahia, C. E. (2009). Legal and ethical dictionary for mental health professionals(2nd ed.). Lanham, MD: University Press of America.

American Psychiatric Association. (2000). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders: DSM-IV-TR(4th ed., text revision). Washington, DC: Author.

Aneshensel, C. S., & Phelan, J. C. (Eds.). (1999) . Handbook of the sociology of mental health. New York: Kluwer Academic.

Baer, L., & Blais, M. A. (Eds.). (2010) . Handbook of clinical rating scales and assessment in psychiatry and mental health. New York: Humana Press.

Campbell, R. J. (2009). Campbell’s psychiatric dictionary(9th ed.). Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press.

Carlat, D. J. (2010.). Unhinged: The trouble with psychiatry — a doctor’s revelations about a profession in crisis. New York: Free Press.

Craighead, W. E., & Nemeroff, C. B. (Eds.). (2001) . The Corsini encyclopedia of psychology and behavioral science(3rd. ed., Vols. 1-4). New York: Wiley.

Friedman, H.S. (Ed.). (1998) . Encyclopedia of mental health. San Diego, CA: Academic Press.

Gotlib, I. H., & Hammen, C. L. (Eds.). (2002) . Handbook of depression. New York: Guilford Press.

Hales, R. E., Yudofsky, S. C., & Talbott, J. A. (Eds.). (1999). American Psychiatric Press textbook of psychiatry(3rd ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Press, Inc.

Hinrichsen, G.A. (1990). Mental health problems and older adults. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO.

Horwitz, A. V., & Scheid, T. L. (1999). A handbook for the study of mental health: Social contexts, theories, and systems. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press.

Logan, S. M. L. (Ed.). (2007). Mental health care in the African-American community. New York: Haworth Press.

Mechanic, D. (2008). Mental health and social policy: Beyond managed care(5th ed.). Boston: Pearson/Allyn and Bacon.

Plante, T. G. (Ed.). (2006). Mental disorders of the new millennium(Vols. 1-3). Westport, CT: Praeger.

Ponterotto, J. G. , Casas, J. M., Suzuki, L. A., & Alexander, C. M. (Eds.). (2010) . Handbook of multicultural counseling(3rd ed.). Los Angeles, CA: Sage.

Reid, W. H., & Silver, S. B. (Eds.). (2003). Handbook of mental health administration and management. New York: Brunner-Routledge.

Sadock, B. J., & Sadock, V. A. (Eds.). (2005). Kaplan & Sadock’s comprehensive textbook of psychiatry(8th ed., Vols. 1-2). Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Steele, R. G., & Roberts, M. C. (Eds.). (2005). Handbook of mental health services for children, adolescents, and families. New York: Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers. (Also available ONLINE)

Worell, J., & Goodheart, C. D. (Eds.). (2006). Handbook of girls’ and women’s psychological health. New York: Oxford University Press.

World Association for Infant Mental Health. (2000). Handbook of infant mental health(Vols. 1-4). (J. D. Osofsky & H. E. Fitzgerald, Eds.). New York: Wiley.

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2. Search the online catalog for additional books that will give you the history, context, definitions and theories.

Below are suggested keywords to use when searching for information. You can use them when searching the catalog or the research databases. Try combining them with another concept having to do with your subject:

  • abuse
  • anxiety
  • attachment
  • depression
  • development stages
  • dual diagnosis
  • life cycle
  • mental health
  • mental illness (mental* ill*)
  • post traumatic stress
  • psychopathology
  • psychosocial
  • sexuality

Also, use these subject headings, which may give you better search results in the library catalog than keywords:

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3. Find some general articles on your topic.

After you have located books on your topic, start looking for general journal articles on your subject. Several general databases include:

  • Academic Search Complete
    Subjects: most academic topics
    Formats: journals, magazines, newspapers, books, book reviews
    Publication dates: 1887-present
  • LexisNexis Academic
    Subjects: news, law, business
    Formats: newspapers, wire services, broadcast transcripts, company profiles, court cases
    Publication dates: most are 1990s – present; court cases are 1789 – present
  • Article First (OCLC)
    Subjects: business, science, humanities, social sciences, medicine, technology, popular culture
    Formats: journal articles
    Publication dates: 1990 – present
  • Summon
    Subjects: interdisciplinary
    Formats: journal articles, books, conference proceedings, newspapers, images, databases and more available at CWRU
    Publication dates: Ongoing
  • TOPICsearch
    Subjects: current events, social, political and economic issues, scientific discoveries
    Formats: journal articles, magazine articles, biographies, book reviews, government information, public opinion polls, international newspapers
    Publication dates: 1990 – present

These databases are interdisciplinary and most provide a mix of popular magazine articles and scholarly research articles.

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4. Search subject specific databases for more scholarly journal articles.

After finding general journal articles on your topic, begin focusing on scholarly research articles. Citations, abstracts and, sometimes, the full-text of journal articles are found in a variety of research databases:

  • AgeLine
    Subjects: aging, gerontology
    Formats: journal articles, books, book chapters
    Publication dates: Selected coverage 1966 to 1977; inclusive coverage from 1978 to present
  • CINAHL Plus with Full Text
    Subjects: nursing, allied health
    Formats: journal articles, books, dissertations
    Publication dates: 1981 – present
  • Health and Psychosocial Instruments
    Subjects: tests
    Formats: journal articles, books, technical reports, and test publishers’ catalogs
    Publication dates: 1985 – present
  • MEDLINE with Full Text (EBSCO)
    Subjects: medicine
    Formats: journal articles
    Publication dates: 1949-present
  • PsycINFO
    Subjects: psychology and related disciplines
    Formats: journal articles, books, dissertations
    Publication dates: 17th century – present
  • Mental Measurements Yearbook with Tests in Print
    Subjects: tests
    Formats: test information and reviews; does not include the actual test
    Publication dates: 1985 – present
  • Social Work Abstracts
    Subjects: addictions, aging, child and family welfare, community organization, homelessness, human services, mental health, therapy
    Formats: journal articles
    Publication dates: 1965-present

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5. Browse current issues of journals that contain literature on your topic.

Journals that are most likely to contain information on the topic of mental health include:

Administration and Policy in Mental Health online at: OhioLINK, E-Journal Portal. (Public catalog) [Title changed to: Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research, v. 33- 2006-]

Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research online at: OhioLINK.
E-Journal Portal. (Public catalog

American Journal of Orthopsychiatry online at: OhioLINK. E-Journal Portal. Public catalog) [Harris Library hard copy discontinued]

American Journal of Psychiatry online at: Psychiatryonline. E-Journal Portal. (Public catalog) [Harris Library hard copy discontinued]

Clinical Social Work Journal online at: OhioLINK.E-Journal Portal. (Public catalog)

Community Mental Health Journal online at:OhioLINK. E-Journal Portal. (Public catalog)

Journal of Primary Prevention online at: OhioLINK. E-Journal Portal. (Public catalog)

New Directions for Mental Health Services (Public catalog) [For current volumes see: New Directions for Youth Development]

Schizophrenia Bulletin online at: Oxford University Press. (Public catalog)

Smith College Studies in Social Work (Public catalog)

Social Work in Mental Health online at:Taylor & Francis Online. E-Journal Portal. (Public catalog)

Women & Therapy online at: Taylor & Francis Online. E-Journal Portal. (Public catalog)

Additional journals that cover general topics in sociology and social studies are available in the Electronic Journal Centerand the E-Journal Portal.

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6. Search online for additional information.

Information located through the Internet can provide supplemental material to scholarly research articles. Material retrieved from websites should always be evaluated for currency, authorship, bias and accuracy.

Here are selected websites on mental health:

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7. Evaluate the information you have collected from books and articles.

Consult the bibliographies of the books and articles you have selected. This will lead you to additional references and authors to investigate. Make notes of the gaps in your literature so that you can use this information when you do additional searches. Click here for more information on evaluating the information you have collected.