Starting a Scholarly Project…


You are interested in a scholarly project that examines whether ginseng slows the progression of chronic kidney disease. Where do you start?


  • Review general knowledge of disease processes from the basic pathophysiology to a more advanced knowledge of prognoses and treatments.
  • Determine if your research question needs refinement based on the literature.
  • Create a research project based on your knowledge and the information found from searching the appropriate resources for your specific topic.
What Do You Need To Do?

Refresh your memory- What do you know about this condition? What would be important to check to connect all these pieces of information? Consider looking at: causes, risk factors, pathophysiology, staging, treatments, etc.

Has anything been published in the literature about your specific topic?


Why Is This Important?

Having a good understanding of the disease you are interested in, and then searching the literature to see what has been published about your topic, is crucial for you to complete your scholarly project.


How Can You Make These Connections?

Take the following quiz to assess how much you know about CKD:

Quiz Yourself

Check the appropriate resource to refresh your memory on trusted, well-established information.

Access Medicine is a collection of online textbooks, assessments, images, illustrations, diagnostic and point-of-care tools. Use Access Medicine to learn the basics about the disease of interest.

Cochrane Library and PubMed are databases of medical literature, including systematic and other types of reviews. Use these databases to search for literaure about the disease of interest.

Explore these resources on the Health Sciences Library website:

Using the Resources

Access Medicine

Enter your term in the main search bar – can be the full term or an acronym (you can search for “chronic kidney disease” or “CKD”).

There are possibilities to narrow your search by textbook or topic (left hand side of results screen). You can also limit by publication category: books, quick reference, multimedia, images, cases, or patient education.

Access Medicine is available via mobile applications.


Cochrane Library

Access through the Library’s website, under the “Top Resources” heading –

Enter your terms in the main search bar using appropriate Boolean operators. There are filters to narrow your search on the left hand side of results screen.

Search the results for appropriate systematic reviews that have been written about your topic.



On the homepage, use the main search bar to enter your search terms.

Enter your search terms using the appropriate Boolean operators (OR, AND, NOT).

The results will on the next screen. Apply the Review filter. Search in the refined literature for systematic reviews that have been written about your topic.


For more information please visit the Learning at Your Own Pace tutorials page on the library website –

Review The Important Concepts

The following review activity will test your knowledge of CKD and the information you learned about in this section:

CKD Scholarly Project Review Activity


Question yourself!  The best way to calibrate how much you know about a condiditon is to ask yourself questions.

Remember the following steps are essential when starting a scholarly project:

  1. Identify that you have an interest in studying a medical condition
  2. Evaluate what you know about that condition.  Calibration is key.
  3. Choose an appropriate resource to find more information: Access Medicine, Cochrane Library, and PubMed.
  4. Use that resource efficiently to get the information you need.