Evidence-Based Practice


When you think of the idea of “evidence,” you might think about evidence used in a court case or to solve a crime. In a legal sense, evidence refers to the information that helps establish certain facts in a case. But, what do we mean when we refer to “evidence” in engineering research? In this module, we’ll introduce the concepts of scientific evidence and evidence-based practice and consider why they are importantThen, we’ll identify some of the different types of information sources you can use to find scientific evidence and inform your academic and professional work in engineering.  

Modes of Learning

In this module, students will use the following modes of learning:

  • Videos and short assessments

This module will take approximately 15 minutes to complete.

 Intended Learning Outcomes

By the end of this module, students will be able to…

  • Recognize the importance of using evidence to inform their work
  • Identify some important sources of information for engineers

 Key Terms & Concepts

  • Scientific evidence
  • Evidence-based practice

Topic 1: Introduction to Evidence-Based Practice

This video will introduce the term ‘evidence-based practice’ and explain how and why it is important in engineering contexts.

Watch Introduction to Evidence-Based Practice in full screen.


Topic 2: Information Sources in Engineering

This next video explores information sources in engineering and the most common types of sources engineers use.

Watch Information Sources in Engineering in full screen.




In this module, you discovered how evidence-based practice can be applied to inform your decisions, and you learned about some of the information sources that you might use as an engineering student and in your professionalcareer.

Icon for references References

[1] G. Guyatt et al., “Evidence-Based Medicine: A New Approach to Teaching the Practice of Medicine,” JAMA, vol. 268, no. 17, pp. 2420–2425, Nov. 1992, doi: 10.1001/jama.1992.03490170092032.

[2] B.A. Kitchenham, D. Budgen, and P. Brereton,Evidence-Based Software Engineering and Systematic ReviewsBoca Raton, FL, USA: CRC Press, 2016.[Online]. Available: https://learning.oreilly.com/library/view/evidence-based-software-engineering/9781482228663/


[3] J. Kaufman, C. Tenopir, and L. Christian, “Does workplace matter? How engineers use and access information resources in academic and non-academic settings,” Science & Technology Libraries, vol. 38, no. 3, pp. 288-308, Jul. 2019, doi: 10.1080/0194262X.2019.1637806.


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Engineering and Information: Research Skills for Engineers Copyright © by Katie Harding, Alanna Carter, Shelir Ebrahimi, and Eva Mueller is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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