Research methodology
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Research methodology






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Research methodology Research methodology Presentation Transcript

  • RESEARCH METHODOLOGY, BIOSTATISTICS & DISSERTATION WRITING workshop at Regional Centre Abbottabad 14 – 17 Sep, 2013
  • Origin of the Word “Research”  From the French word "recherche" which means to travel through or survey
  • Research is A Process of Systematic, Scientific Data  Collection  Analysis &  Interpretation So as to find Solutions to a problem.
  • Types of Research  Qualitative  Quantitative
  • Research - Types Qua L itative Descriptive Numbers not the primary focus Interpretive, ethnographic, naturalistic Qua N titative N for numbers Statistical Quantifiable 9/16/2013
  • 9/16/20137 Steps of Research
  • 8 Steps in Designing & Conducting Research Matching the Research Design to research objectives Thinking about topic formulating research question/ objective Defining and clarifying the research Variables/ Analysis plan Drawing the Sample Developing the tools & defining the methods of data collection Monitoring and Carrying out the research Preparing the Data for Analysis Analyzing Data Writing the Research Report
  • Title of The Study
  • Title  Title should be short, concise and informative • Crispy, that catches the eye • Accurate, that tells what the paper is about and the problem studied • Method by which problem studied, if possible • Should excite rather than stifle interest • Title should almost never contain abbreviations, chemical formulas, proprietary names and the like • It would neither be in negative or interrogative form 10
  • The first 7 words are redundant. It is clear that it is a research study so words like “an enquiry entitled.” or “A study to--------”are SPACE TAKERS. 11 Examples 1. The scheme for the investigation into the basic factors responsible for the development of resistance in malaria patients under chloroquin therapy.”
  • 2. “ Research in Experimental Surgery” too vague and gives no information on the line of work. 3. “Neuro chemical studies on experimentally induced convulsions in relation to normal and anaesthetised animals and survey of epileptic patients and certain neuro chemical studies on the cerebrospinal fluid of preclassified epileptic patients.” 12
  • 4. “Further studies on Eczema and Dermatitis” not better than “Eczema and Dermatitis” 5. “Assessment of the susceptibility of mosquitoes of public health importance to insecticides and investigation of other related problems.” The last 6 words do not add any information. 13
  • 6. “Investigation of etiology of urolithiasis with special reference to malnutrition and dietary factors etc.” ‘ etc’. Should never be in the title . It has no meaning . The title could have been “Role of mal-nutrition and dietary factors in the etiology of urolithiasis.” 14
  • 7. “Study of management of extremely low birth weight neonates at Sheikh Zayed Hospital Lahore for evaluating the problem in Pakistan” A study conducted at Sheikh Zayed Hospital cannot be generalized for Pakistan 15
  • 16 Selecting a Research Topic
  • 17 Criteria for Selecting a Research Topic  Relevance  Innovation  Feasibility  Acceptability  Cost-effectiveness  Ethical consideration
  • 18 CRITERIA FOR SELECTION Proposed Topic Relevance Innovation Feasibility Acceptability Cost Effectiveness Ethical TOTAL SCORE How big is the problem? How important is it to look for relevant solutions to it ? ns to it available, if so how effective have they been proved? ? Is this the problem of importance in our local set up? Priority Ratings for Research Proposals
  • 19 CRITERIA FOR SELECTION Proposed Topic Relevance Innovation Feasibility Acceptability Cost Effectiveness Ethical TOTAL SCORE In case the topic has been researched what new are you looking at Priority Ratings for Research Proposals
  • 20 CRITERIA FOR SELECTION Proposed Topic Relevance Innovation Feasibility Acceptability Cost Effectiveness Ethical TOTAL SCORE Consider the resources that are required to carry out the project Priority Ratings for Research Proposals
  • 21 CRITERIA FOR SELECTION Proposed Topic Relevance Innovation Feasibility Acceptability Cost Effectiveness Ethical TOTAL SCORE research a topic which has the interest and support of the authorities Priority Ratings for Research Proposals
  • 22 CRITERIA FOR SELECTION Proposed Topic Relevance Innovation Feasibility Acceptability Cost Effectiveness Ethical TOTAL SCORE Whether the resources of time, money and manpower being invested in the study are worthwhile Priority Ratings for Research Proposals
  • 23 CRITERIA FOR SELECTION Proposed Topic Relevance Innovation Feasibility Acceptability Cost Effectiveness Ethical TOTAL SCORE Priority Ratings for Research Proposals • Cultural sensitivity must be given careful consideration. • Informed consent ensured. • Will treatment be given to individuals identified during study who require treatment?
  • Medical Ethics: Four Principles  Respect for autonomy  informed consent  communication  confidentiality  Beneficence (Provide the benefits)  Non-maleficence (Do no harm)  Justice  fair distribution  respect for people's rights  respect for moral values
  • Ethical Issues  Informed Consent.  Respect for privacy.  Confidentiality and anonymity of data.  What is permissible to ask?  No harm to researchers or subjects.  No deceit or lying in the course of research.  Consequences of publication.
  • 26 Proposed Topics CRITERIA FOR SELECTION Relevance Innovation Feasibility Acceptability CostEffectiveness EthicalConsideration Total Score Complications of AIDS 1 3 1 1 1 1 08 Smoking & Birth Weight 2 2 2 2 3 3 14 Lead in Blood 3 3 3 3 3 3 18 …………. Priority Ratings for Research Proposals
  • 27 Literature Search
  • 28  Allows one to search in a purposeful and systematic manner, through a range of literature or information relevant to one’s particular field, and to hone in on material relevant to ones interest and objectives. What is Literature Search?
  • 29 Why do Literature Search  To keep up with the latest developments in your field.  To learn more about some topic.  To document important facts and ideas you wish to research in light of previous work done on it.  To understand your data in the context of what is already known.  To provide your readers with sources they can consult on their own.
  • 30 Means of Literature Search – Internet  Access to a massive pool of information related to biomedical and clinical source.  Can link with library catalogues, online databases, like MEDLINE and direct access to ever increasing number of biomedical journals.  Retrieval of data from a range of organizations universities, research establishments and hospitals.  Many services are available free of charge.
  • 31 Search Strategy on Internet Summarize your topic in one or two sentences. Identify the unique ideas or concept associated with your topic. Choose appropriate keywords for each concept. Establish the relationship between each keyword and concept.
  • 32 Example Pub Med Sources  PubMed is derived from two words, Publications, and Medical.  It is a project of the National Institute of Health, National Library of Medicine.  Available on the internet, there are thousands medical journals on this list.  It searches for you from millions of papers.  For more details of PubMed, you may visit.
  • Searching Online Medical Resources For General Info: For Research Articles Only: For translating text from any language: For Google Images: To get answers for your questions: Pakistani local Journals:
  • Free Medical Journals: websites tools/free-journals-list.php. DOAJ(Directory of open access journals): MedIND (
  • Use of the Internet General Purpose Search Engines  Yahoo (  Altavista (  MSN (  Google (  Copernicus (  Metacrawler (
  • Use of the Internet Medical Search Engines  MedHunt (  MedNets (  HealthAtoZ (  DoctorNet (  MedConnect (  OMNI (  and many more…. Get a complete list by typing “medical search engines” in any good browser.
  • Use of the Internet Some Good Medical Websites:  : an excellent site for medical professionals. Free registration, access to specialty and subspecialty pages, full-text articles and the latest medical news and events. Includes CME content.  : the website of the WHO. Provides the latest activity of the WHO, annual reports, bulletins,monographs, research funding reports and forms, global vital statistics and trends.
  • Use of the Internet  : the official website of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.  It provides global information on a variety of diseases, chiefly infectious diseases, epidemiology and disease control.  The statistical software Epi Info is available for download from this site.
  • Use of the Internet Websites for free full-text articles:  : free full-text retrieval for members, as already mentioned.  : a major new source of journals in almost all specialties, that allow free full text article retrieval.  Journal Websites:,,, : allow free full-text retrieval of journal articles through their own search engine as well as an archival catalog.
  • Use Internet wisely  : website of the Medical Research Library of Latvia. Has an English version of its browser; lists specialty and subject-wise journals and websites for free full-text retrieval.  Both and allow full- text article retrieval freely.  Many other sites, particularly online journal sites, allow full-text article retrieval after payment or for journal subscribers.
  • Some useful sites  Medline  NIH/NLM www.nlm.nih.    or  php (a German foundation for medical research and education. First go on it, select topic than click on pub med free full text at the top and get the search)
  • List of publishers websites  J-Gate  (1 million full text articles available here)   
  • Boolean Search  Use AND to narrow search and retrieve records containing all of the words it separates.  Use OR to broaden search and retrieve records containing any of the words it separates.  Use NOT to narrow search and retrieve records that do not contain the term following it.  Use ( ) to select a phrase or groups of words - Phrase - (participatory action research) - Groups of words – (housing or homelessness) AND (budget or funding)
  • Scientific Paper Organisation l Title l Authors l Abstract ______________________________________________________________________________________ l Introduction l Materials & methods l Results l Discussion l References
  • 45 Research Objective
  • 46 • To show the extent and the expected outcome of the study • To begin with a leading statement followed by the objectives written in point forms
  • 47 Research Objectives  An objective is an intent of what the researcher wants to do stated in clear measurable terms.”  summarizes what is to be achieved by the study.
  • 48 Importance of Research Objectives 1. Brings focus to the study. 2. Avoids collection of unnecessary data. 3. Determines an appropriate study design. 4. Helps determine analysis plan.
  • 50 A Good Objective ensures that: What is to be measured is clearly stated, be it a measure of frequency, or Association in the population of interest.
  • A good objective ensures that: What is to be measured is clearly stated be it: o A frequency measure o Association between two variables o Difference between two groups
  • 52 Examples Objectives:  1)To determine the frequency of anemia in pregnant women visiting Tertiary care facilities of Sindh.  2) To determine association between maternal smoking and LBW.  3) To compare the effectiveness of dressing A vs. dressing B in patients presenting with infected wounds of the foot.
  • 53 Operational Definition
  • 54 Operational Definitions  Is the definition of the exposure and outcome variables of interest in context to objective in a particular study and their means of measurement/determination.  Examples:  Anemia  Effectiveness  PPH  Wound healing
  •  The objectives should be followed by some ‘operational definitions’.  These should be picked from the title and objectives.  Include defining your meanings to these terms as you plan to use in your study. Terms like ‘efficacy’, ‘association’, ‘correlation’, ‘complications’ ‘satisfaction’ may need to be defined.  If drugs are to be used, their route, dose, and duration should be listed. Operational Definitions
  • Operational Definitions  Definitions of operational terms used under the conditions of your research study.  Examples:  Define anaemia in a study on anaemic patients: < 10 g/dl or < 12 g/dl.  Define SBP in a study on hypertensive patients: > 140 mm Hg or age adjusted values.