Comparative Evidence-Based Practice

441 Words2 Pages
Comparative evidence-based practice
Carol Perryman

“If more researchers were to take a disciplinary perspective fully into account, one could see the scope for better cross-fertilisation and a better sense of unity between them” (Becher, 1994).

Objective: This study examines the adoption of evidence-based practice (EBP) concepts into LIS and three other disciplines (medicine, nursing, social work) by comparing documentation from each. Initial questions are as follows:
• What elements distinguish differences in the adoption of evidence-based concepts into different disciplines?
• How are these elements evidenced in the professional publications, association standards, and models for evidence-based practice?
Methods: First, the top ten journals from library science (LIS), medicine, nursing, and social work were identified. Next, primary bibliographic databases for each discipline (LISA, Medline, Cinahl, and Social Services Abstracts) were searched for terminology related to evidence-based practice and research methodologies for the period from 1995-2005, in order to track diffusion of EBP concepts to each field through its top literature. Professional association statements, EBP models, barriers to practice, controversies, and other aspects were considered, then compared between the disciplines.
Results: Disciplines traditionally based on an empirical body of evidence may be more ready to adapt evidence based models for practice than those whose foundations rest at least partially in the social sciences (social work, LIS), and this is evidenced by the patterns of use of EBP-related research methods as reflected in the disciplines’ top resources.
Conclusions: By comparing across disciplines we can better understand how EBP has been adapted to suit the different disciplinary contexts, and consider how this might best occur in LIS. This

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