Finding Theses & Dissertations

OHSU Library Catalog

The OHSU Library has almost all the dissertations from OHSU students, and a few others. Look for these in the catalog.

To browse the theses/dissertations for a specific field, use the subject heading for the discipline (i.e., Medicine, Nursing, Dentistry) and the subheading theses.

Example: Nursing theses

To search for a thesis/dissertation on a specific subject, combine the subject search with the subject keyword theses

Example: Alternative Medicine and theses


The CINAHL database through EBSCO includes citations to nursing dissertations and theses.

To search for dissertations or theses on a specific subject:

  1. Do a subject search
  2. Click on “Revise Search” in the Search History.
  3. Go to "Publication Types" and select both "Doctoral Dissertation" and/or "Masters Theses"
  4. To select both, select the first one and then hold down the control key when you select the second. This will "OR" the two terms together.


WorldCat is a catalog database that includes dissertations and theses from around the world.

Do a keyword search, combining your concepts as follows:

  1. In the first search box enter your subject keyword (e.g. alternative medicine or herbal medicine)
  2. In the second search box enter: dissertation or dissertations or thesis or theses
  3. If you want to limit it to a specific field, in the third search box enter synonyms for that field (e.g. nurses or nurse or nursing)
  4. Click on the search button and you should come up with a fairly comprehensive list.

WorldCat must be used on an OHSU networked computer. If used from off-campus you must have library barcode.

Dissertation Abstracts

Dissertation Abstracts is a subject, title, and author guide to virtually every American dissertation accepted at an accredited institution since 1861. Selected Masters theses have been included since 1962. In addition, since 1988, the database includes citations for dissertations from 50 British universities.

OHSU no longer has Dissertation Abstracts. However, it is accessible at Portland State University.

Finding a Specific Dissertation/Thesis

  • If you know where the dissertation/thesis was written, you can go to that university's library catalog and get the information you need.
  • To find the URL for the university library go to Libraries on the Web
  • Find the library catalog on the web page
  • You will be able to search for the dissertation/thesis by author, title, or subject

Obtaining a specific dissertation/thesis

  • Once you have found citations for theses/dissertations you will need to request them through Interlibrary Loan if they are not in the OHSU collection.
  • Be aware that there may be charges for Interlibary Loan from the lending library.
  • Some dissertations/theses are available only on microfiche, or printed from microfiche.