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SOCW 553: Research Knowledge and Evidence in Clinical Social Work Practice

Overview of evidence-based practice, literature review/systematic review workflows, and citation management for your written EBP assignment.

Importing Results

Currently, Covidence does not allow for direct import from databases, so you'll be using the RIS files that you exported from your database searches. 

To Import your RIS Files:

  1. Open your review in Covidence
  2. Select the Import References step in your review
  3. Click the Import button on the right
  4. Select Screen from the drop-down from Import In To
    • Items can be added to other phases, but for this project, you'll stick to adding things to Screen
  5. Select Choose File and select the RIS file for the database you are importing
  6. Repeat steps 3-5 until all of your RIS files have been imported


Covidence has an automatic de-duplication function built in that checks each import for duplicates against previous imports. It isn't perfect, but does a pretty good job with most databases. 

Reviewing Duplicates Removed:

You should always review the duplicates the system found to ensure there weren't any incorrectly identified. 

  • Open your review
  • Click on Total Duplicates Removed to the left of the Import button along the Import References stages of the review
  • Review the list of duplicates closely
  • If a duplicate is incorrectly identified, select the Not a Duplicate button, and it will be added back into your screening queue

Noting Duplicates While Screening:

Not all duplicates are always found. Currently Covidence does not have a function to add duplicates found into the duplicates count, so you have to note them with a Study Tag and count them manually at the end into your PRISMA chart. 

The easiest way to ensure you find duplicates while screening, is to review the screening lists using Title sorting.

  • While screening Title/Abstract or Full-Text, if you encounter a duplicate, select the box next to the duplicate you wish to note (before excluding it)
  • Click the Tags button at the top of the screening list
  • Select the Manual Duplicate tag your group pre-created or create one for your group
  • Select No if screening Title/Abstract or Exclude if reviewing Full-Text (an exclusion reason of Manual Duplicate may need to be made)

Once your group is done reviewing the full-text, and you are building your PRISMA chart - you can search for the study tag Manual Duplicate (or what your group named your duplicates) and adjust the final PRISMA chart numbers from the excluded count(s) into the duplicates count.