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Finding Information: Welcome



This module covers each stage of the literature searching process, including how to:

  • Define your research question
  • Develop your search strategy
  • Select databases and run searches 
  • Evaluate your results

Why searching systematically is important


To find information for a research topic, use a technique called systematic searching (not to be confused with systematic reviews). This process uses the research question itself to build a search strategy. This strategy is then translated across other relevant databases and information sources. The final part of the process is evaluating your results and selecting the ones most relevant to your research question.

Advantages of using the systematic searching process:

  • Unbiased: Searching comprehensively helps to reduce the risk of publication bias
  • Transparent: You can show clearly how you found the resources
  • Relevancy: You can show why the resources ended up in your search
  • Repeatable: Someone else can check your work using the same search strategy because you have a record of it


Key resources