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Evidence-Based Practice Intro : Kinesiology / Movement Studies / Sports Medicine

Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Resources

Note: Think of these being published on a continuum of time...

PRIMARY resources provide access to articles describing observational studies or experimental studies which:

  • Are written by the actual researchers
  • Describe only a single study, not a group of studies
  • Are usually published in academic, peer-reviewed journals


SECONDARY resources provide access to synopses, structured abstracts, systematic reviews and meta-analyses.

  1. Create summaries of information found in primary sources
  2. Include reviews, systematic reviews, and meta-analyses


TERTIARY resources do not develop material themselves.

  1.  Include reference/background/presearch/exploratory resources that broadly synthesize the literature and accepted practice 
  2. Are not updated as often as primary and secondary literature
  3. Example: Martindale: The Complete Drug Reference (2009) 

(With thanks to the people who created other library guides which I used to create this one)

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