Available Until 10/31/2028

Grey Literature in Nursing: Benefits, Challenges, and Case Studies*

For more information or to schedule this course, contact: Christopher Duffy, christopher.duffy1@shu.edu.

This course will review the concept of Grey Literature in Nursing. Participants will be able to describe the benefits and challenges that are faced when searching for, and using, Grey Literature. Participants will come away with practical resources to help them search for Grey Literature, and strategies to use when searching for this type of material.

Learning Objectives:

  • Recognize the benefits of Grey Literature in Nursing
  • Describe the challenges that are faced when searching for, and using, Grey Literature
  • Review specific resources that can be used to find Grey Literature in Nursing

Section 1: (1 hour, live didactic presentation)

What is Grey Lit?

Benefits of Grey Literature

  • Outside of commercial publications
  • Professional organization knowledge dissemination
  • Doesn’t have publication bias (not a positive outcome- neutral or negative)
  • International sources, less of a local and language bias
  • Less delay between research and publication
  • Can change results of systematic reviews and meta-analyses, can remove biases
  • Cost- may not need to subscribe to a expensive journal or purchase article
  • Chances to find more literature when low volume in published literature
  • Can find local expertise as well as local data


  • How to find? Not indexed often
  • Documenting how you found it
  • research methodology may not be reported as fully or may not be as stringent
  • cost- sometimes access to literature is members only- must pay
  • time consuming to find
  • Hard to export to citation management software
  • Sometimes in other languages and cannot translate

Section 2 (1 hour, live didactic presentation)

Grey Literature specific databases and search engines

  • Government Documents
  • Conference proceedings and abstracts
  • News Media- Newspapers, television or web-based news
    • when public health angle, mention Deaths at music festivals article
  • Dissertations and Theses
  • Institutional repositories                                                                                                         
  • Web searches using Google and Google Scholar
  • Some exercises to practice searching for Grey Literature


Section 3 (1 hour, live didactic presentation)

Case Studies and more Resources 

  • Clinical trial protocols and results
  • Specialty Nursing resources
  • Nursing Lectures, Seminars, and Tutorials
  • Trade Literature
  • A Few Exercises
  • Case Studies where Grey Literature was used

MLA CE Credits:3