Answered By: Pollak Library Guides
Last Updated: Jul 11, 2017     Views: 562

1. Check the article database you are using to see if it allows you to limit your search to empirical research. For example:

PsycINFO
Change search limits to METHODOLOGY = Empirical-Study

ERIC
Change search limits to PUBLICATION TYPE = Reports - Research

ABI/INFORM
Limit CLASSIFICATION CODE (drop-down box) = 9130 (Experiment/theoretical)

CINAHL
Change a drop-down box from KEYWORD to PUBLICATION TYPE and type the word research in the text box to the left.

If there is no specific limiter for finding empirical articles, do a keyword search and add terms common to primary research articles: methods or methodology, research design, survey, data, results.

2. Using any full-text article database, combine your search terms with words commonly used in research articles.

  • Common words include methods or methodology, research design, survey, data, and results.

3. Search for peer reviewed articles. Note that every article in a peer reviewed journal does NOT report empirical research, but many do.