Welcome to the Physical Therapy Guide, where you'll find a variety of library resources to support your research in physical therapy.
The following links will assist you in understanding how to access materials through the Tompkins-McCaw Library website.
This tutorial will familiarize you with the changes to PubMed.
This guide references VCU Libraries' "Evidence-Based Practice" research guide. Be sure to visit this guide via the links on this page to review the resources that will help you navigate the evidence-based process:
An evidence-based question asks what evidence is available to determine if your current method is following best practices. This follows a process of distinguishing between your background and foreground questions. Choosing the correct library resource for the question begins at even this stage, as some resources are better suited for background questions while others are used to answer the foreground questions.
As with other research projects, you will break up your question into concepts. For evidence-based practice questions, this process includes the PICO format:
|Patient population/Problem||How would I describe a group of patients similar to mine?|
|Intervention||Which main intervention, exposure, or prognostic factor am I considering?|
|Comparison||What is the main alternative (if applicable) to compare with the intervention?|
|Outcomes||What can I hope to accomplish, measure, improve, affect?|
Identifying the type of question you're asking is important because:
The next steps in your search process will be:
The "evidence-based pyramid" is a good guide for determining which studies are designed to be the most rigorous, thus decreasing bias. Even then, you still need to evaluate the methodology to determine how rigorously the study was performed.