New Features Added to PsycINFO

PsycINFO® is APA’s flagship research database, providing access to records for journal articles, books, chapters, dissertations, and other scholarly psychological content, with extensive global and historical coverage, and full cited references.

APA strives to keep PsycINFO useful and relevant. This means that, every so often, we need to add a new field to the database. (In this context, a field provides a specific type of information about the article being described – age group of the participants, for example, or the methodology used.) This allows us to provide researchers and users in the behavioral sciences and related disciplines with improved usability and new tools to help retrieve content and conduct their research.

We bundle these changes together and add them all at once, in what we refer to as a “reload” or “refresh” of the database. On August 1, we released a refresh of PsycINFO that includes several new features. These new features are already available on APA PsycNET® and EBSCOhost; Ovid and ProQuest are working on uploading the changes. Our vendor partners implement reloads on different schedules, so check with your vendor or visit our Vendor Reload Status Update page for more information.

In the coming weeks, we will be providing more in-depth information on how these fields and features work, and where to find them as you search PsycINFO. We will also be offering webinars to demonstrate the features live. We’ll announce the schedule here as soon as it’s ready!
Open Access
This new field makes it clear at a glance if an article or journal indexed in PsycINFO is open access. If you are looking for open access research on APA PsycNET, limit the search using the “Open Access” checkbox.

PsycINFO records now include abstracts in multiple languages. English abstracts will always be available, and abstracts in other Roman alphabet languages will be part of some PsycINFO records.

Impact Statement
As a tool for serious researchers, PsycINFO’s records will always include an abstract in the standard scientific format. Impact statements, which describe the relevance of the research to the general public, are included when provided by the publisher. If you are searching for impact statements using APA PsycNET, limit the search using the “Impact Statement” checkbox.

PsycINFO now includes more detailed descriptions for dissertations. In addition to UMI number and OpenURL, dissertation records now include advisor(s), the degree earned, and the institution and department. Searchers can use this information to identify research conducted across multiple disciplines, find new collaborators, or identify leading advisors in evolving areas of research.

Data Set
Interested in researching data sets? Published research increasingly incorporates data sets along with the written summary of the study. When a data set is provided, PsycINFO records now include DOIs and other links for access to a data set, as well as a description.

Source Title Translation
For non-English language journal titles, the publisher’s English translation is included in the record. This translated title can be used in a search for the journal. In this way, customers can find and identify a journal using the name they are familiar with, while citation accuracy is preserved. Source Title Translation has been mapped to all previously-released PsycINFO records.

NLM Title Abbreviation
The NLM (National Library of Medicine) abbreviation of a journal title, as seen in PubMed, has been added to PsycINFO records as an alternate way to search for and identify the publication. No need to look up the abbreviation before searching PsycINFO for the item! NLM Title Abbreviation has been mapped to all previously-released PsycINFO records.

Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) are harvested from PubMed for those PsycINFO records that also appear in the Medline database. On APA PsycNET, the MeSH terms are linked to run a search on PubMed for additional research on the topic. MeSH has been mapped to all previously-released PsycINFO records that also appear in Medline.

Clinical Trial Number
Clinical Trial Number identifies a research study sponsored by an institute or agency registered with the World Health Organization. The majority of clinical trial numbers in PsycINFO records are provided by the NIH, and these are hyperlinked to search on, so researchers can easily and efficiently gather the information they need.

Document Type
This controlled field has the new value “Interview” to capture this type of document. “Clarification” and “Retraction” have been added as new values to complement the existing “Erratum/Correction” value. This provides our indexers with a more fine-grained way to deal with corrections and retractions.

This controlled field has the new value “Metasynthesis,” which is an interpretive integration of primary qualitative research. In addition, “Treatment Outcome/Clinical Trial” has been split into two distinct values for improved clarity.

Population Group – Transgender
This controlled field has the new value “Transgender” to reflect the science and improve the search experience for researchers focused on this population.

New features are often generated from suggestions that we receive directly from our customers, so tell us what you think of the new PsycINFO features. PsycINFO feedback is welcome via email ( or by phone (800-374-2722).

Alison K. Cody, MSLIS

I'm the Manager of Customer Support for APA's Databases & Electronic Resources, and a former academic reference & instruction librarian.