Evidence-Based Practice

These tools will help you to develop the skills to understand and apply evidence-based practice.

BMJ Qualitative Research Topic - a collection of articles published in the BMJ focusing on the qualitative research methodologies and critical appraisal of the papers. Includes a glossary of terms.

CASP - the Critical Appraisal Skills Programme (CASP) provided by the NHS Public Health Resource Unit, is a key tool for evaluating research. It's resource section pinpoints questions to consider when appraising different types research articles.

CATMaker - CATs are Critically Appraised Topics. This handy downloadable tool provides the means to develop CATs. It prompts the development of your clinical question, and assesses the clinical value of a paper.

CEBM - Centre for Evidence Based Medicine. Major resource for tools, aids and documentation for evidence based teaching and practice.

CHAIN - Contact Help Advice Information Network for Effective Health Care. Contact database for health care professionals interested in clinical effectiveness and evidence based health care. Aimed at health care professionals, teachers, managers, librarians, specialists, researchers and other professionals.

EMCDDA best practice portal - EU drugs agency portal to a range of resources covering drug related prevention, treatment, harm reduction and social re-integration. Split into four sections looking at intervention efficacy, tools for evaluating practice, standards and guidelines and examples of evaluated practices.

Evidence-based practice checklists - downloadable checklists, developed by Glasgow University, General Practice and Primary Care Department. These are designed to help you ask the appropriate questions when examining different research methodologies.

Evidence based practice for Public Health - this website is a result of a project run by the Lamar Soutter Library at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, which assessed the models of evidence based practice when applied to Public Health.

PRISMA Statement - Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) Group guidance on reporting a systematic review and meta-analysis.

Webliography of resources for Evidence-based Health Care - from the Cochrane Library; includes sections on books, articles, websites, databases, journals, news reviews, patient resources, tutorials and social media resources (eg blogs, RSS feeds etc)

Get more help from the Health Library via the resources below:


Literature Search Plan (361KB) - this guide will help you to develop a literature search strategy by considering the key concepts and scope of your topic.

Literature searching overview and action plan (127KB) - introducing the 9 steps to successful literature searching and helping you to plan your own search

Use these tutorials and tools to help you to identify your question and complete your literature search more effectively; complete the relevant worksheet to help you to breakdown your question:

MeSH on Demand - tool from Pubmed to help you to generate Medical Subject Headings (or thesaurus terms) from your queries.

Pubmed Search Strategies Blog - suggests keywords, Mesh terms and combinations to use in searches on Pubmed for a wide range of conditions and patient groups.

Centre for Reviews and Dissemination (CRD) Systematic Reviews: CRD’s guidance for undertaking reviews in health care - overview of systematic review methods, includes a section on documenting the search process.

Prisma Statement - Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analysis, consists of a 27 item check list and 4-phase flow diagram indicating how to report a systematic review.


Information Skills videos - watch these short videos to learn more about what information skills are and how to develop your skills to improve your literature searching

Check your skills - assess your own literature searching skills and find out how you can improve them

Introduction to literature searching - complete our tutorial to learn how to construct your literature search plan

Literature searching flashcards - get a quick overview of the key steps you need to develop your literature search plan

Information Skills - find more tutorials to help you to develop your information skills and learn to search effectively

How to search the literature effectively - programme on the eLearning for Health Hub (eLfH), in partnership with HEE; designed to help the healthcare workforce (clinical and non-clinical) build confidence to search published literature for articles and evidence

Online Guides

See our blog, Information Skills for Health, for a range of articles to help you get to grip with literature searching:

Be Search Smart - series of articles introducing all the different elements of literature searching as well as hints as to how the Health Library can help you.