Skip to main content
Library Research Guides

SW 522 - Basic Social Work Research

The Literature Review

Need some help and tips on performing a literature review? Try one of these books.

The Process

Research is a process that requires patience and thought. There is no easy way to make certain you have exhausted every resource and found the best research. Research is more of an art rather than a science. There are steps you must take, however to thoughtfully go through this process.

An Alternative Model of the Research Process

A 14-step Process*

  1. Choose a problem
  2. Review the literature
  3. Evaluate the literature
  4. Be aware of all ethical issues
  5. Be aware of all cultural issues
  6. State the research question or hypothesis
  7. Select the research approach
  8. Determine how the variables are going to be measured
  9. Select a sample
  10. Select a data collection method
  11. Collect and code the data
  12. Analyze and interpret the data
  13. Write the report
  14. Disseminate the report

* Fang, L., Manuel, J. Bledsoe, S.E. & Bellamy, J. (2008). Finding existing knowledge. In Grinnell, R.M. & Unrau, Y.A. (Eds.), Social work research and evaluation: Foundations of evidence-based practice (p. 466). Oxford: Oxford University Press.