Creating your Research Question
Before even running to the librarian, you need to figure out what you want to research.
Word of advice: research a topic you find interesting! The easiest part of research is locating the right articles--the hardest part is reading and interpreting the data. If you don't find the data interesting, the work will be painful. So again: research a topic you find interesting!
Try breaking your research question down before going to the databases:
- Write down your question in a narrative form and identify the key words for your search.
- Think of synonyms for the keywords.
EXAMPLE: Does psychotherapy reduce the risk of PPD for patients between the ages of 13 and 17?
Keywords: psychotherapy, reduce, PPD, ages of 13 and 17
- Post-Partum Depression
- Prenatal Depression
- Perinatal Depression
- Baby Blues
The word reduce is not a MeSH term, but by placing the asterisk * at the beginning of the word will help the database look for the following words: reduce, reduced, reduction, reducing, reduces, etc.