PICOT Question and Search Strategy Template

PICOT Question and Search Strategy Template

PICOT Question and Search Strategy Template

Use with the library guide:

  1. Define your question using (review the “” page as needed):

Population:         __________________________________________________________________

Intervention:     __________________________________________________________________

Comparison:       __________________________________________________________________

Outcome:            __________________________________________________________________

Time (optional): __________________________________________________________________

  • Write out your question:     ______________________________________________________


  • Write down the most important words from your in the gray boxes.  For each top term, add synonyms or related terms in the boxes below it.  All these are your search terms.
  • Review the “Best Bets” in the . Check the databases you will search:
__ CINAHL Complete (*Recommended) __ Nursing & Allied Health __ Public Health Database __ Health & Medical Collection __ OVID Nursing Full Text Plus ­__ PubMed Central  
  • Write in your first search below.  Follow the instructions on the “” page.




  • Scholarly/peer reviewed                               Œ  Limit publication date:   
  • Type of studies you want to include in your search:
__ Systematic Review or Meta-Analysis __ Clinical Practice Guidelines __ Individual Research Studies __ Critically Appraised Research Studies
  • What information did you find to help answer your question?


This form is adapted from: Syrene A. Miller, PICO and Search Strategy, National Center for Dental Hygiene Research

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