Critical appraisal


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Critical appraisal

  1. 1. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 1 Critical Appraisal
  2. 2. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 2 Critical Appraisal of Research • An important skill to have is to be able to critically read research articles • It is not wise to accept research findings without a critical appraisal It helps you to determine • Is the research valid • Can I apply it to my „population‟ • Was it conducted “properly”
  3. 3. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 3 Articles will usually look like this… • Title • Abstract • Key words (not usual in quantitative research articles) • Introduction, rationale or background • Methodology • Results • Discussion • References
  4. 4. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 4 Appraisal – the first steps • The Title • The Abstract • Key Words • Publication Information • Author Information • This should be completed in 10-15minutes and you should be able to get this information from the first page of the article (and sometimes the references/bibliography)
  5. 5. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 5 The Title • Should be specific and to the point • Should show clear relationship to the content • Qualitative study titles can often be wordy and not related to the content (remembering qualitative is about subjectivity and is word heavy)
  6. 6. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 6 The Abstract • A summary of the article • By the end of the abstract, it should be clear if it is of use to you • Should be limited to 300 words or less • Should contain Why the research was conducted How the research was conducted Clear detail on the results or conclusions • Quantitative research abstracts can be very minimalistic and obscure using technical grammar and terminology that is specific to the research • Qualitative abstracts are more narrative
  7. 7. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 7 Key Words • Five or six words that cover the key concepts of the research • Usually straight after the abstract • Not always included in quantitative research articles • Can help in literature searches i.e. use the keywords to search
  8. 8. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 8 Publication Information • The type and quality of the publication chosen by the author can quickly inform of the potential quality of the research • Nursing research publication in Australia has only a brief history, however now a large amount of journals etc to chose from • Remember websites such as wikipedia can be authored by anyone
  9. 9. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 9 Hierarchies in Publication Peer Reviewed Journals • Assessed by one or two experts in the field of research • Considerations of the experts High quality research – is it? Fits the standards of the journals editorial board – does it? Makes a significant contribution to the area or specialty – does it?
  10. 10. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 10 Peer Review Journals in Australia • Nursing Inquiry • Australian Journal of Advanced Nursing • Contemporary Nurse • Collegian • Australian Health Review • and more… The editorial board members are listed in the journal to promote credibility and authority – adds weight.
  11. 11. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 11 Non-Peer Reviewed • Submitted research is not subjected to the same level of critique • Commonly read by more nurses as they are generally supplied as part of a subscription to a professional body • Research may/may not be high quality • Examples Australian Nursing Journal (ANF publication) JGenca (Gastro-Enterological Nurses College of Australia)
  12. 12. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 12 Author Information • What are the authors qualifications? • What are their affiliations? • Do these suggest credibility? • Does this increase your confidence in the research?
  13. 13. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 13 Review the References • Can point to the quality of the research • Ability to critique the references comes with being an expert in the particular field • Questions to ask How many articles are cited? Are the references current? (Last 5-10 years) Are the authors and journals specialised and relevant to the research?
  14. 14. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 14 Where to next…? • If you have determined that the article is relevant to your needs, it is now time to move on to appraisal of the methodology, results and implications for practice.
  15. 15. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 15 Further critique… some things to think about • Ethics Where any ethical issues identified? If so, how were these addressed? • How extensive was the literature search? Was it conducted on current literature? Was it extensive? Is there a description of how the search was conducted e.g. search terms?
  16. 16. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 16 Ctd… • Study Limitations Were any limitations of the research identified within the article? Can you identify any limitations that were not addressed within the article? • Sample How was the sample chosen? Is the sample representative of your population?
  17. 17. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 17 And even more… • Examine the data collection tools, the data collection process and analysis Are there any visible flaws? Was the collection tool reliable? Is the collection tool shown in the article? • Are the findings relevant to clinical practice? • How was funding obtained? Does the funding source present any ethical issues?
  18. 18. Document Title (Editable via „Slide Master‟) | Page 18 And after all that… • Are the findings relevant to practice? • Can the findings change practice? • Is this research of use to me?