Social Work *: Finding Scholarly Sources

Randall Information Center | USC School of Social Work

Multidisciplinary Databases

Social Work Databases

The databases below cover specific subjects. Select the database based on your topic. Look at the database descriptions to help you. For example, PsycINFO, which covers mental and behavioral health, would be good for articles about interventions or depression.  Topics pertaining to education, try ERIC and topics about older adults, try AgeLine.

Social Work Journals

Look up the top ranked journals in Social Work according to Web of Science Journal Citation Reports 

In the database, Journal Citation Reports - select Browse Categories. Then select the tab Journal Ranks, and use the filters on the left to select the subject. 

The selected journals below include scholarly, peer-reviewed social work research. You can access other journals on the USC Libraries website by using the Journals search. Under FIND, select Journals. 

Peer-Reviewed Articles

What is a Peer-Reviewed Article? 

Peer-reviewed articles are written by experts and researchers who want to share their research with others in the field.

How do you find Peer-Reviewed articles? 

Search online databases and scholarly journals. Read the database description to determine if it includes peer-reviewed articles. Many databases include options to limit your results to peer-reviewed articles. 

Quick Reference

Ulrich's Periodical Directory will tell you if a journal is peer-reviewed (refereed). Type in the journal's name and look in the "Refereed" field.

Dissertation Databases

USC Dissertations

Search USC Digital Library or the database ProQuest Theses & Dissertations to find USC dissertations.  

If you have trouble locating a dissertation, please contact the USC Digital Library via email at cisadmin@lib.usc.edu

Non-USC Dissertations

The database ProQuest Theses & Dissertations is also a good source for locating digitized dissertations produced at other universities in the United States.

In addition, more and more universities no longer require students to deposit their dissertations with ProQuest so you may want to search for an university's institutional repository via Google and search within that digital collection for a particular publication.