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Social Work: Evidence Based Practice

A guide to finding articles, books, and more for Social Work.

Evidence Based Practice

According to the The Social Work Policy Institute, evidence based practice (EBP) “is a process in which the practitioner combines well-researched interventions with clinical experience and ethics, and client preferences and culture to guide and inform the delivery of treatments and services. The practitioner, researcher and client must work together in order to identify what works, for whom and under what conditions.” EBP features in the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Code of Ethics.

Evidence Based Practice Steps:

  1. ASK - Convert the need for information into a focused question. Consider using the COPES (Shlonsky & Gibbs, 2004) tool to develop your question.
  2. ACQUIRE - Track down the best evidence with which to answer that question.
  3. APPRAISE - Critically appraise the evidence for its validity, impact, and applicability.
  4. APPLY - Integrate the evidence with your clinical expertise and ethics as well as your client's characteristics and values.
  5. ASSESS - Assess the results of your intervention.

Shlonsky, A., & Gibbs, L. (2004). Will the real evidence-based practice please stand up? Teaching the process of evidence-based practice to the helping professions. Brief Treatment and Crisis Intervention, 4(2), 137-153.

EBP Resources