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SWK 350 Fall 2018: Search Strategies

Sample PsycINFO and ERIC searches

Overview of Writing a Literature Review

1.  Write in the past tense when summarizing other studies

2.  Paraphrase in your own words. Only use direct quotations occasionally

3.  Follow the basic outline of ideas recommended by the APA Style manual

  • Define and clarify the problem
  • Summarize previous investigations to inform reader of state of research
  • Identify relations, contradictions, gaps, and inconsistencies in the literature
  • Suggest the next step in solving the problem

4. Strive to have a diverse range of sources and methodologies represented in your literature review.

5.  Focus on findings and conclusions! Write about what matters.

Your Assignment

Using your text book, the materials you have reviewed from this course, and your own selected outside readings you will construct a 7-10 page minimum position paper on a topical area of your choice. The topical area should be related to social work practice at either the micro or the macro level. You should incorporate at least 5 outside sources. The paper will consist of 3 major content areas:
(1) a review of the literature on the chosen topic (appox. 4-6 pages)
(2) application of the theoretical content from this course to the topical area and (approx.. 2 pages)
(3) the relevance of this information to your career development as a professional social worker including what area of social work practice you plan to pursue (or have the most interest at this time) and why this area of practice is important to you.  (appox. 1 page)

Introduction to the topical area:
1.    Provide a description of the focus area
2.    Report findings from the research literature
3.    What trends are reported in the data
4.    Identify any gaps in the research literature
5.    What challenges exist for individuals in this population
6.    In simple terms: What is going on here?

Research Literature

Craft your search by using keywords about the topical area of your chose.  There are a number of databases at Carmichael Library that will help you locate research literature.  Consider searching for research literature in each of the databases listed below.   In order to locate research literature, limit your search to peer-reviewed journals.

Tips:  Consider adding the term SOCIAL WORK as a keyword to narrow your results. 

Find Help!

We are happy to help you with your research!



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