Janine Overcash, PhD
Elaine Slucomb, PhD
- When considering a research topic, go with what you know!
- What types of patients are generally under your care?
- What types of procedures do you generally perform?
- About what do you know a great deal?
Step 1: Develop a Unique and Specific Focus
- What interests you?
- In what are you proficient?
- What expertise do you have to share?
- Keep narrowing down
- Move to a specific focus before you start writing
- Who is the intending audience?
Example of Specific Focus
||Dehydration in the elderly
||Dehydration in elderly nursing home residents
||Prevention of dehydration in cognitively capable nursing home residents who do not have swallowing deficits.
Example: Selecting Audience
- RN charge nurse working in long term care who regularly plans care and supervises activities of LPNs & nursing assistants caring for cognitively capable residents.
Focus is critial
- Develop strong, narrow, unique focus and identify the specific audience BEFORE you write one word!
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Elements in a Method Section
- Study Design
- Data Collection Procedures
- The main purpose of the Method Section is replication. This section should provide enough detail so that other scientists could carry out a similar study.
- Often, this section provides data on which to judge validity and reliability of the study.
- Quantitative or Qualitative
- Randomized Clinical Trial
- Intervention Studies
- How were the groups determined
- Where the study was preformed
- What type of participants were sampled
- Inclusion Criteria
- Exclusion Criteria
- Informed Consent
- How were the participants invited to participate
- Convenient Sample
- Breast cancer patients, aged 50 and over, English Speaking and who have never undergone chemptherapy
Measurements or Instruments
- Illustrate each of the instruments used in the study.
- Describe scoring of each instrument
- Describe the validity and reliability of each instrument.
Data Collection Procedures
- How the participants were recruited.
- Where did the data collection taken place (exam room)
- What period of time is required for the data collection per participant
- How often are the participants sampled
Support the data points. Why is data collection required at the beginning of chemo, at middle and end.
- How the participant's privacy will be protected.
- Who is the data collector
- How will they be trained
- On what will the data be recorded (hardcopy or computer)
- Any information that would facilitate reconstruction.
- Statistical Procedures.
Cogent with research questions stated in the beginning of the paper.
- Fridlund, B. (2006). Writing a Scientific Manuscript: Some Formal and Informal Proposals. European Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing, 5, 185-187.
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Results and Discussion
- Present the findings
- Findings should address each of the research questions
- No discussion or interpretation of the findings- just the facts
- Report all findings, even the ones that are counter to the hypothesis.
Order of Results
- Offer sample characteristics
- Number of participants
- Means Frequencies
- Present findings in the order of research questions
- Use tables to further illustrate the findings
What to Report
- Generally, do not include individual results.
- Include selection of size effect indicators.
- Report confidence intervals.
- Statistical power.
- Statistical significance.
- Unintended or unexpected findings.
- The discussion section evaluates and interprets results.
- Compares with previous research findings by the author.
- Current standards of practice.
- Compares with other research findings.
- Provides reasons for differing findings.
- Problem Choice
- Why was the problem identified
- Application and synthesis
- Do not over generalize findings.
- Often subjective.
- Be careful with the claims associated with the research.
- Why are the results important.
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Tables And Figures
- Efficient way to present data.
- Exact numerical values.
- Limited in number.
- Can help reader compare data.
- APA Manual pages 149-154.
Relationship of Table to Text
- Tables must be understood without the help of explanation in the text.
- The text discusses the highlights.
- Standard statistical abbreviations do not need to be explained.
Points to Consider
- Combine tables that repeat data.
- A table is a relationship between columns and rows and figure can be a pictorial or illustration.
- Number all tables in order of mention in the test.
- When constructing a research article, develop tables first and then write your text.
- Title all tables.
- Specific types of tables
- Is the table necessary?
- Is the entire table double spaced?
- Are all tables consistent in presentation?
- Are the titles brief yet explanatory?
- Does every column have a heading?
- Are all abbreviations explained?
- Is the table mentioned in the text?
- A figure is a chart, drawing, photo or graph.
- A figure should augment rather than duplicate the text.
- Convey essential facts.
- Is not distracting.
- Easy to read and understand.
- APA manual 177-181.
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Identifying the Research Question PPT
Method Section PPT
Results and Discussion Section PPT
Tables and Figures PPT