When searching for relevant articles in databases, pull out your key concepts and search using the tips in the next box. 

These are some relevant keywords to get you started on your search. The subject headings are links to library resources, the keywords can be used when searching in databases or google scholar. 

Keywords to use when searching in databases

"child abuse" OR "child neglect"
"child maltreatment"
"prevention of child abuse"
"parenting stress"
"parenting programs"
"parenting interventions"
"parenting education"
parent child interactions
"parenting skill" OR "parenting competence"
parenting confidence
"caregiving stress"
caregiv* relationship child
communication skills

Relevant Subject Headings in the Library Catalog

Abused children > United States.

Parenting > United States.

Child abuse.

Child welfare

Child abuse > Prevention

Abused children > Services for.

Child abuse > Services for > United States.

Parent and child > United States.

Child abuse > Cross-cultural studies.

Searching Databases

Boolean SearchingMost databases allow the use of AND, OR and NOT to broaden or narrow and search. 

  • AND will narrow the search to include only records with both terms. 
  • OR with broaden the search to include records with either term.
  • NOT will narrow the search to exclude records with one of the terms.

Truncation:  You can use an * at the end of a word stem to broaden your search to include related terms.  For example, to search for child, children or childhood use the search term child*

Putting quotes "" around words allows you to search for a phrase.  For example, searching language development, without quotes, finds records with both the word 'language' and 'development' somewhere in the record.  Searching "language development", with quotes, only find records with the phrase "language development".


Example: How does bilingualism affect language development in children?


Search Strategy








NOTE:  When you begin doing advanced searching in a new database, look for the Help or Information sections to determine how that database works, and how it may differ from other databases with which you are familiar.

What is Grey Literature

Gray (or grey) literature is literature produced by individuals or organizations outside of commercial and/or academic publishers. This type of non-formally published substantive information (often not formally peer-reviewed; especially important in all kinds of sciences) can include information such:

Where to find Grey Literature

Evidence Based Parenting Programs