VCU Libraries

Research Guides

SLWK 313: Person in Society

Definitions & Statistics

Evaluating Sources

Information for Paper 1

  • What is your problem? How is it defined?
  • How prevalent or widespread is the problem?
  • What is the incidence rate? How frequently does it occur in a specific time period?
  • What demographic factors are associated with the problem or condition (age, gender, race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status)?
  • What non-demographic risk factors are associated with the problem (environmental, neighborhood, school, peers, family, genetic, cultural)?
  • What protective factors (social networks, religion, after school activities) are related to the problem?
Search terms like these will help you answer these questions:
  • prevalence OR incidence OR statistics
  • demographics OR race OR ethnic* OR age OR socioeconomic status
  • risk factors OR predictors
  • protective factors

Search library databases for peer-reviewed articles on your topic.


Start with Social Work Abstracts - or with any database below that makes sense for your topic.


You may need to search more than one to find what you need. One way to do that from any of the EBSCO databases below is to use the "Choose Database" option. Select several relevant databases or select  "All." 

Your searches should look something like this

You can also specify that terms be searched in the Title field or Abstract field, or a combination of fields.