How to Write an Evidence-Based Paper

How to Write an Evidence-Based Paper

Evidence-based medicine uses the newest research and clinical expertise in order to provide the best possible care for patients. By integrating systematic research practices, good health care management technique, and clinical skill, health care professionals are better able to provide the most cost- and clinical-effective practices. As a student, writing an evidence-based paper is an assignment that you will inevitably receive. Evidence-based papers rely on research and proven facts, and not on conjecture or common belief.

  • Research materials
  • AMA Style Guide
  • Computer

1 Select a Cutting-Edge Topic

Choose your topic. With evidence-based medicine, your topic should focus on a common clinical problem, rather than a rare disease or some unusual manifestation. Emphasize new research or information that could prompt a practical change in procedure. For instance, you may find it interesting to investigate the evidence supporting promising new practices, such as music therapy for anxiety reduction, mindfulness training for pain management, or culturally sensitive approaches to asthma treatment.

2 Thoroughly Investigate

Research your paper using online and print sources. Use the university library to gather evidence and primary source material that relates to your topic. Evidence-based medicine relies heavily on patient-centered clinical research, including the efficacy of therapies and diagnostic tests. Build your hypothesis or thesis from your findings. Include all strong recommendations that are backed up by factual evidence from trusted sources. Journals are excellent sources because articles are typically reviewed by experts in the field before publication.

3 Create an Outline

Write an outline for your paper that includes an introduction, methodology, review of findings, discussion, conclusion and references. Under each section, list the main ideas as bullet points. Write your paper, using the evidence you gathered in your research. State your findings or arguments clearly and concisely. Include studies that contradict your hypothesis. Explain why that study might have produced different results, such as a small sample size or lack of rigor in data collection. If needed, modify your hypothesis to account for the new information you discovered.

4 Polish Final Draft

Cite all evidence that is gleaned from a source, and list all your sources in the references section. If you're writing this for an assignment or a publication, check which format your article needs to be written in, and the preferred method of citation such as the AMA Manual of Style. After you have finished writing your paper, edit your draft for factual or style errors. Make sure all of your citations and references are correctly listed. After your initial edits, let a friend or tutor read your paper as well, and ask for feedback. Edit your paper one final time before handing it in.

  • If you're writing this for an assignment or a publication, check which format your article needs to be written in, and the preferred method of citation.

Nicole Cipri is a professional writer living in Chicago, Ill. She earned her bachelor's degree from the Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash., where she also studied theater, history, carpentry, sociology, gender and cultural studies. Cipri is a DIY enthusiast with professional experience in electronics, building, cleaning, carpentry and house renovations.