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ISSN- 2348-5191 (Print version); 2348-8980 (Online)

Best, Useful and Objective Precisions for Information Retrieval of Three Search Methods in PubMed and iPubMed

Somayyeh Nadi Ravandi, Nadjla Hariri, Mehrdad Farzandipour


MEDLINE is one of the valuable sources of medical information on the Internet. Among the different open access sites of MEDLINE, PubMed is the best-known site. In 2010, iPubMed was established with an interaction-fuzzy search method for MEDLINE access. In the present work, we aimed to compare the precision of the retrieved sources (Best, Useful and Objective precision) in the PubMed and iPubMed using two search methods (simple and MeSH search) in PubMed and interaction-fuzzy method in iPubmed. During our semi-empirical study period, we held training workshops for 61 students of higher education to teach them Simple Search, MeSH Search, and Fuzzy-Interaction Search methods. Then, the precision of 305 searches for each method prepared by the students was calculated on the basis of Best precision, Useful precision, and Objective precision formulas. Analyses were done in SPSS version 11.5 using the Friedman and Wilcoxon Test, and three precisions obtained with the three precision formulas were studied for the three search methods. The mean precision of the interaction-fuzzy Search method was higher than that of the simple search and MeSH search for all three types of precision, i.e., Best precision, Useful precision, and Objective precision, and the Simple search method was in the next rank, and their mean precisions were significantly different (P < 0.001). The precision of the interaction-fuzzy search method in iPubmed was investigated for the first time. Also for the first time, three types of precision were evaluated in PubMed and iPubmed. The results showed that the Interaction-Fuzzy search method is more precise than using the natural language search (simple search) and MeSH search, and users of this method found papers that were more related to their queries; even though search in Pubmed is useful, it is important that users apply new search methods to obtain the best results.


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  • DOI:10.21276/ambi.2016.03.2.Ta02

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