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Evidence-Based Practice for Social Work

This guide shows how social work researchers can take advantage of resources from the library as well as free resources to track down the best evidence

Evaluating Research

Three questions to answer when reading the research –

1.       What was the research question and why was the study needed?

2.       What was the research design?

3.       Was the research design appropriate for the question?



Here are some other things to think about when reading your research



1.       Title

a.       Does the title give any insight as to what the article is about?

2.       Introduction

a.       Is the problem being studied clearly stated?

b.      Is there a review of previous literature related to this study?

c.       Did the author identify a gap in the literature?

d.      Is there a hypothesis stated?

e.      Is the purpose of the study stated?

3.       Method

a.       Are the subjects well described?

b.      How was the sample selected?

c.       How large was the sample?

d.      Was a control group used?

e.      Is the procedure laid out in detail?

f.        Could someone replicate the study from this description?

g.       Is the data analysis well described?


4.       Results

a.       Are the measured data summarized?

b.      Are the results statistically significant?

5.       Discussion

a.       Was the hypothesis accepted or rejected?

b.      Were there weaknesses in the study discussed?

c.       Are other articles or studies cited which address the findings?

d.      Were any suggestions made for further study on this topic?

6.       Conclusion

a.       Are the results briefly restated?

b.      Do conclusions make sense based on the results and discussion?