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EMT & Paramedic Research Guide


This guide is a starting point for locating EMT and Paramedic-related books, videos, journal articles, images and credible websites. Use the tabs below and the menu on the right to research, locate, evaluate and cite resources.

If you need additional help, stop by one of our Reference Desks or contact a reference librarian.

  1. Books, Videos & Models
  2. Articles & Databases
  3. Websites
  4. Citing

Use the Library catalog to search the COD Library's collection of books, videos, e-books, and streaming media. Use your COD Library card to check these items out or access them online.

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Browsing the Collection

Search the Library catalog for relevant EMT/Paramedic topics such as: Anatomy; Ambulance drivers; Emergency medical personnel; Emergency medical services; Emergency medical technicians, Emergency medicine; Medical emergencies, Pediatric emergencies; Physiology; or Rescue work.

Need help searching our Library Catalog?
Watch this 2 minute Library Simple: Find Library Items Using the Catalog--YouTube Video

Another strategy is to search by call number. Health-related materials are shelved in the "R" section of libraries that use the Library of Congress classification system. EMT/Paramedic books are located in the following call number ranges: RA 645.5 - 645.9 Emergency Medical Services and RC 86 - 88.9 Medical Emergencies, Critical Care, Intensive Care, First Aid.

Reference Materials

Reference materials are well indexed, up-to-date, concise, and highly credible. They provide overviews, definitions, specific information (such as causes & symptoms, diagnosis, treatments, prognosis, etc) or addresses. Types of reference books include: directories, dictionaries and encyclopedias, basic health books (describing diseases and conditions), and drug resources. Since you cannot normally take these materials home, remember that you will have to photocopy, or write down the information that you need. Some reference materials are available full text, online via our databases. Below are some examples of the types of reference books found in the C.O.D. reference collection.

Some of these resources are designed for consumers (such as the Johns Hopkins or Mayo Clinic health books), some for health students and consumers (the Gale Encyclopedia series), and some for health professionals (Cecil or Harrison's), so the type and level of information differs to suit each audience. Some reference works are available in Spanish language versions.

small yellow star.jpgReference Best Bets

Dorland's Illustrated Medical Dictionary
REF R 121.D73 2012 (Ready Reference--located at our reference desks)

small yellow star.jpgGale Encyclopedia of Medicine
ONLINE ACCESS to Gale Virtual Reference Library*
* This link will allow you to simultaneously search all of the medical-related Gale Encyclopedias available in the Gale Virtual Reference Library database

Merriam-Webster Online Medical Dictionary (select medical reference, includes audio pronunciations)

Goldman's Cecil Medicine
REF RC46 .C423

Conn's Current Therapy
REF RM101 .C87

Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment
REF RC71 .A14

Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine
REF RC46 .H333

small yellow star.jpgNancy Caroline's emergency care in the streets
REF RC86.7 .A44 2018

Physical Examination & Health Assessment

small yellow star.jpgSanders' Paramedic Textbook
REF RC86.7 .S26 2019

Streaming Videos

You must have a valid College of DuPage library card to access these video databases from off-campus.

Click here for a complete list of our COD Library Online Video Databases

A few recommended databases include:

Academic Video Online
a collection of full-length streaming videos. A wide-range of disciplines are included. Most useful to EMT/Paramedics is the Health & Health Care collection. Also included in the subscription are full transcripts of each video program that are keyword searchable, easy playlist and clip making functionality, permanent embeddable URLs for easy use in online courses.

Nursing Education in Video
Nursing Education in Video is an online collection of videos created specifically for the education and training of nurses, nursing assistants, and other healthcare workers. All of the videos in the collection have been created with the guidance of the Medcom-Trainex advisory board, and are regularly reviewed for accuracy, currency, and compliance with US Federal regulations from agencies such as OSHA and CMS.

Remember that additional DVDs, CD-ROMs and multimedia resources can be found by searching the COD Library catalog. Use your COD Library card to check these items out for in-library, home viewing, or online access (depending on availability).

Anatomical Models

Anatomical Models are available at the Library circulation desk.

For even more assistance with anatomy & physiology, check out the COD Library's Anatomy & Physiology Research Guide!

Locating Journal Articles

The Library provides access to many online article databases that will help you locate journal, magazine, and newspaper articles. You can search by keyword, subject, author and title.

Databases are organized collections of information that you can search by a variety of fields, like title, author's name, subject or keyword. iTunes is a database and so is Amazon. The Library has databases of articles from newspapers, magazines and journals. We also have databases of streaming videos, music and e-books. The difference between our databases and iTunes or Amazon is that our databases are free for you to use. You can browse the library's databases here: Article Databases by Subject

You must have a valid College of DuPage library card to access the electronic indexes and databases from off-campus.

Newspaper Databases
Includes Chicago Tribune, New York Times, Christian Science Monitor, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal and more

Databases by Subject
Begin your research by selecting one of our Health and Medicine Databases

"Best Bet" Health Databases

Academic Search Complete
Academic Search Complete contains indexing and full text for 9,100 journals. 7,100 of these journals are peer-reviewed scholarly titles. This collection provides both popular and scholarly journal coverage for nearly all academic areas of study - including social sciences, humanities, education, computer sciences, engineering, physics, chemistry, language and linguistics, arts & literature, medical sciences and ethnic studies.

Care Notes
Care Notes helps medical professionals educate patients and their families about certain conditions. Contains 2500 English and 2500 Spanish documents that address patient condition, treatment, follow-up care, psychosocial issues, continuing health, and the most frequently administered drugs.

The online version of Cumulative Index to Nursing & Allied Health Literature, CINAHL Complete covers nursing, allied health, biomedical and consumer health journals, publications of the American Nursing Association, and the National League for Nursing. It now includes the CINAHL Thesaurus and full text of over 1,300 important nursing and clinical journals as well as over 130 Evidence-based Care Sheets; nearly 170 Quick Lessons providing Overviews of Disease and Conditions; 170 Continuing Education Modules; and full text for 360 Research Instrument Records.

small yellow star.jpgGale Virtual Reference Library (GVRL)
GVRL is a collection of online reference books on a variety of topics including Business, History, Literature, Medicine, Social Science, Technology and many more.
individual entries from these resources can be printed and emailed.

Health Source: Nursing/Academic Edition
This resource provides 600 scholarly full text journals focusing on many medical disciplines. Coverage of nursing and allied health is particularly strong. In addition, this database includes the Clinical Pharmacology database, providing access to up-to-date, concise and clinically relevant drug monographs for all U.S. prescription drugs, hard-to-find herbal and nutritional supplements, over-the-counter products and new drugs.

small yellow star.jpgMedlinePlus
MedlinePlus has extensive information from the National Institutes of Health and other trusted sources on over 900 diseases and conditions. There are also lists of hospitals and physicians, a medical encyclopedia and a medical dictionary, health information in Spanish, extensive information on prescription and nonprescription drugs, health information from the media, and links to thousands of clinical trials.

small yellow star.jpgMICROMEDEX Healthcare Series
Provides full-text information supporting clinical care decisions including: drug monographs and evaluations, drug dosages and interactions, drug product identification, reproductive risks, toxicity management, alternative medicine/herbal preparations information, acute/emergency care guidelines, drug, disease and condition information for patients, laboratory test information, dosage calculators, nomograms, and references

Science Direct
**Be sure to select "Subscribed Journals" from the Source drop-down menu**
Indexing and full-text of 175 journals in science, chemistry, nursing, biology and other related disciplines.

ANYONE can put information on the Internet. As a health care provider, you must carefully select and evaluate health information before using it to treat patients or letting it influence how you perform your duties. Use the evaluating sources page to help you determine the credibility of Web sites. A great test is to ask yourself, "Would I want myself or someone that I care deeply about to be treated based on this information?" If the answer is "no," don't include the information in your academic projects either!

Associations & Organizations

CAAHEP: Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs

CoAEMSP: Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs for the Emergency Medical Services Professions

Atlases, Dictionaries and Handbooks

MedTerms Medical Dictionary

Merriam-Webster Online
Includes medical dictionary, thesaurus, Spanish-English, unabridged, visual, and ESL

Merck Manual Consumer version

Merck Manual Professional Edition

Career & Resume Resources

COD's Career & College Information Collection (CCIC)
Located on the second floor of the Library (3rd floor of the SRC building), CCIC provides online and print information on educational opportunities, occupational choices and job-seeking skills. This multimedia collection can assist you in planning for your educational, career and employment goals. Resources cover writing resumes & cover letters, preparing for certification exams, preparing for job interviews, and occupational information (salaries/wages and job outlook)

Diagnostic Medical Test Resources

small yellow star.jpgLab Tests Online
Designed to help the patient or caregiver better understand that many clinical lab tests are part of routine care as well as diagnosis and treatment of conditions and diseases. The site is a collaboration of professional societies representing the lab community

Merck Manual: Common Medical Tests
Provides the normal test result ranges for blood tests as well as a chart of diagnostic procedures, body area tested and descriptions

General Medical Information Websites

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides users with credible, reliable health information on topics such as: data and statistics; diseases and conditions; emergencies and disasters; environmental health; healthy living; injury, violence and safety; life stages and populations; travelers' health; workplace safety and health; and much more. This site contains information appropriate for adults, teens and kids

small yellow star.jpgMEDLINEplus
Provides access to 900+ health topics, medical encyclopedias and dictionaries, and links to self-help groups, clinical trials, preformulated PubMed searches, lists of hospitals and physicians, health and information in Spanish and other languages. Includes listings of diseases & conditions by body system.

small yellow star.jpgMedScape Reference
An online clinical reference providing in-depth drug & disease information and tools to support clinical decision making. Content is designed for practicing medical professionals and includes diagnostic medical images. Free Registration to MedScape is required. To avoid registering and go straight to an entry in this resource, try Googling the word emedicine and your disease/condition (i.e. emedicine pertussis).

Useful EMT/Paramedic Websites

The following websites have been recommended by faculty and the health science librarian as useful for student assignments and professional practice.

C.R.I.S. Community Resource Information System [DuPage County]
A fast and easy way to obtain basic information on social service programs throughout DuPage County [Mozilla Firefox browser is recommended, Internet Explorer may not display correctly]

DuPage County Health Department
Promotes physical and emotional health; prevents illness and disability; protects health from environmental risk factors; and strives to assure the provision of accessible, quality services. Web site topics include: asthma, depression, bioterrorism, consumer services, dental services, DuPage safe food site, environmental health services, mental health services and men's and women's health sites

Emergency Medical Services
Health topic page from

Emergency Medical Treatment & Labor Act (EMTALA)
In 1986, Congress enacted the Emergency Medical Treatment & Labor Act (EMTALA) to ensure public access to emergency services regardless of ability to pay. Section 1867 of the Social Security Act imposes specific obligations on Medicare-participating hospitals that offer emergency services to provide a medical screening examination (MSE) when a request is made for examination or treatment for an emergency medical condition (EMC), including active labor, regardless of an individual's ability to pay. Hospitals are then required to provide stabilizing treatment for patients with EMCs. If a hospital is unable to stabilize a patient within its capability, or if the patient requests, an appropriate transfer should be implemented.

First Responders Training & Technical Assistance
From U.S. Homeland Security

JEMS (Journal of Emergency Medical Services)
JEMS seeks to improve patient care in the prehospital setting and promote positive change in EMS by delivering information and education from industry leaders, change makers and emerging voices. With a rich tradition of editorial excellence and an unparalleled consortium of subject matter experts and state-of-the-science content, JEMS fulfills its commitment to EMS providers, instructors and administrators through all media channels including online and print.

The MedicCast is a podcast for EMT’s, Paramedics, and other medical professionals. The podcast covers news and commentary, tips and tricks, and much more.

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
NHTSA's mission is to save lives, prevent injuries and reduce economic costs due to road traffic crashes, through education, research, safety standards and enforcement activity.

National Pesticide Information Center
NPIC provides objective, science-based information about pesticides and pesticide-related topics to enable people to make informed decisions. NPIC is a cooperative agreement between Oregon State University and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Office of Hazardous Materials Safety
PHMSA’s Office of Hazardous Materials Safety carries out a national safety program, including security matters, to protect against the risks to life and property inherent in the transportation of hazardous materials in commerce by all transportation modes.

Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA)
OSHA creates and enforces workplace safety standards.

Paramedic TV
The first online video community for Paramedical Personnel and Emergency Medical Service departments nationwide, offers members of the fire and rescue community a full-featured, interactive environment to view and upload an unlimited number of industry-focused videos. Similar to, ParamedicTV features sections focused on key Emergency Medical Service topics, video tips and training segments, as well as a growing product demo/virtual trade show video section.

Citing Sources

Whether you are giving an oral presentation or completing a written assignment, it is very important that you give credit where credit is due (cite your sources).

Follow this link for citation tips and resources