Cochrane Training offer a free online learning resource with an accessible introduction to health evidence and how to use it to make informed health choices. There are four modules of up to 45 minutes each, covering the basics of evidence-based medicine, understanding randomised controlled trials and systematic reviews, and resources to help inform decision-making. It is free to access by logging in with an email and password (no other details are needed).
If you are looking for a short overview of the different research designs used to produce health evidence, this guide from the Alliance for Useful Evidence has an excellent summary and a quick pros and cons list of many research designs (PDF) (see pages 21-23). This is a good place to start if you are new to reading about health evidence.
Firstly, to get started with an evidence search it is helpful to understand how to structure your search question to get the most relevant search results. Using the ‘PICO’ framework will help you, as described in the ‘Identify‘ step in the Evidence cycle on this toolkit.
The Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine (CEBM) offers a useful guide and tutorial videos on the steps involved in searching for evidence. Watch the videos here
You may find this video helpful as well.
In this short (10 minute) presentation, ARC West’s Senior Research Associate in Information Retrieval (Sarah Dawson), talks about the nuts and bolts of searching including key elements such as BOOLEAN operators, truncation and phrase searching.
In this short (6 minute) podcast, Sarah Dawson, ARC West’s Senior Research Associate in Information Retrieval, talks about what grey literature is and the best ways to find it.