Being a published nurse author has helped me advance my career by helping me land a job at Elsevier writing nursing textbooks, obtain several faculty positions, and find numerous jobs as a freelance medical writer. Choose a journal or magazine.
Surely the article will be of good quality if it has made it through the peer review process? Unfortunately this is not always the case. Publication bias can occur when editors only accept manuscripts that have a bearing on the direction of their own research, or reject manuscripts with negative findings.
Performing your own critical analysis of an article allows you to consider its value to you and to your workplace.
Critical evaluation is defined as a systematic way of considering the truthfulness of a piece of research, the results and how relevant and applicable they are.
Keywords Three to six keywords that encapsulate the main topics of the research will have been drawn from the body of the article.
Introduction This should include: Evidence of a literature review that is relevant and recent, critically appraising other works, not merely describing them Background information to the study, to orientate the reader to the problem Hypothesis or aims of the study Rationale for the study that justifies its need, i.
Materials and Methods Similar to a recipe, the description of materials and methods will allow others to replicate the study elsewhere if needed.
It should both contain and justify the exact specifications of selection criteria, sample size, response rate and any statistics used.
This will demonstrate how the study is capable of achieving its aims. Things to consider in this section are: What sort of sampling technique and size was used? What proportion of the eligible sample participated? What were the strengths and weaknesses of the study? Were there threats to the reliability and validity of the study and were these controlled for?
Were there any obvious biases?
If a trial was undertaken, was it randomised, case controlled, blinded or double-blinded? At other times the barrier is harder, or even impossible to cross. Communication difficulties arise even when a translator is available, and non-verbal messages may be missed by the patient or even by the health professional.
Results Results should be statistically analysed and presented in a way that the average reader of the journal will understand.
Graphs and tables should be clear and promote clarity of the text. There were any major omissions in the results, which could indicate bias Percentages have been used to disguise small sample sizes The data generated is consistent with the data collected Negative results are just as relevant as research that produces positive results but as mentioned previously may be omitted in publication due to editorial bias.
Discussion This should show insight into the meaning and significance of the research findings. It should not introduce any new material, but should address how the aims of the study have been met. The discussion should use previous research work and theoretical concepts as the context in which the new study can be interpreted.
Any limitations of the study, including bias, should be clearly presented. You will need to evaluate whether the author has clearly interpreted the results of the study, or whether the results could be interpreted another way.
Conclusions These should be clearly stated and will only be valid if the study was reliable, valid and used a representative sample size.
There may also be recommendations for further research. References These should be relevant to the study, be up to date, and should provide a comprehensive list of citations within the text. Final Thoughts Undertaking a critique of a research article may seem challenging at first, but will help you to evaluate whether the article has relevance to your own practice and workplace.
Reading a single article can act as a springboard into researching the topic more widely and aids in ensuring your nursing practice remains current and is supported by existing literature.Review of article "Eight reasons why doctors fear the elderly, chronic illness, and death" in The Journal for Transpersonal Psychology.
A literature review can be a short introductory section of a research article or a report or policy paper that focuses on recent research. Or, in the case of dissertations, theses, and review articles, it can be an extensive review of all relevant research.
The Journal of Practical Nursing, 48(1), Writing Center Don't forget that it's always a good idea to get someone from the Writing Center to have a look at your summary to make any suggestions they may have for revision.
Writing Journal Articles C. David Sherrill School of Chemistry and Biochemistry Georgia Institute of Technology Updated May 1 Introduction These notes include some advice on how to write a paper for publication in a peer-reviewed journal.
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