Research Article Appraisal

Use the same quantitative nursing research article you used for the first paper in this class to complete the second half of the critical appraisal in this paper.  Use full sentences to answer the questions within the criteria, and provide rationales for your decisions (citing sources).

Introduction (no heading). Give the reader a sense of what to expect in this paper (identify the article being appraised [cited appropriately] and state what parts of the appraisal will be included in this paper).  The introduction should be brief and not include information that should be discussed in subsequent sections of the paper. One short paragraph is required.

Population, Sample, & Setting. What was the population for the study? Identify the specific sampling method used for the study.  Discuss the adequacy of the sampling method for producing a sample representative of the population.  Discuss potential biases with the sampling method used.  Identify the inclusion and exclusion criteria used in the study.  Discuss appropriateness of the sampling criteria for the study?  Discuss how the planned sample size was determined (including power analysis & consideration of potential attrition if included).  Discuss actual sample size attained for the study including acceptance rate, refusal rate (including rationale for refusal to participate if presented), and attrition rate.  Describe study setting and its appropriateness for the study. (10 pts)

Legal & Ethical Issues.  Briefly discuss institutional review board approval for the study.  Explain how ethical principles of research (beneficence, justice, & respect for human dignity) were followed to protect subjects’ rights (freedom from harm, privacy, autonomy, & disclosure).  If the study included subjects from a vulnerable population, were additional safeguards used to protect them? (10 pts)

Measurement. Identify and describe the instrument(s) used to measure the major study variables (research or dependent variable[s]).  Identify the level of measurement (LOM) achieved by each instrument.  Discuss the psychometric properties (reliability & validity of questionnaires/scales or precision & accuracy of physiologic measures) of instrument(s) used in this study (authors’ description of instruments’ past reliability/validity & reliability/validity from current research). (15 pts)

Data Collection. Describe data collection procedures used in the study.  Discuss clarity of description of data collection process.  If more than one data collector was used for the study, describe the training of the data collectors and how/whether interrater reliability was adequately assessed/ensured?  (10 pts)

Data Analysis.  List the statistical procedures performed to describe the sample.   List the statistical procedures performed to answer the research question(s).  Discuss appropriateness of statistical procedures for the LOMs of data collected.  Discuss appropriateness of statistical procedures used to address the study purpose/question/hypotheses.  Discuss clarity of description of data analysis procedures.  Did the researcher(s) address management of problems with missing data?  What level of significance (alpha) was set for this study?  Discuss the clarity of presentation of study results (if tables or figures were used, briefly describe them & discuss if/how they made the presentation more understandable).  (20 pts)

Researcher Interpretation of Findings. Describe the key findings of the study in relation to purpose/question/hypothesis.  Discuss the clarity of the authors’ explanation of key findings, including statistically significant & non-significant findings.  Discuss whether the key findings were clinically significant/clinically important.  Describe which findings were consistent with those expected.  Describe which findings were unexpected.  Were findings linked to the study framework?   Describe the study’s limitations identified by the authors.  Did the study have limitations not identified by the authors?  Did the authors identify potential threats to design validity?  Did the authors generalize the findings to other populations?  If so, to what populations were generalizations made?  Discuss appropriateness of any generalizations.  What implications for practice were identified by the authors?  What suggestions for future studies were identified by the authors? (15 pts)

Overall Evaluation of the Study.  Discuss whether/how the study built upon previous research (problems, purposes, designs, samples, &/or measurement), providing examples for support.  Discuss at least one strength of the study.  Discuss at least one weakness of the study and whether/how that weakness could have been corrected.  Discuss credibility of study findings and how much confidence can be placed in them.  Based on the previous research presented in the ROL and the findings of the study presented in this article, discuss whether the findings are ready for use in practice.  Were relevant studies suggested for future research? (10 pts)

Writing Style & Format. The paper will be a 6-10 pages of text, double-spaced, excluding title page and reference list. Pages in excess of 10 will not be graded. Use professional and orderly presentation of ideas (full sentences, precision, clarity, format, grammar, spelling, & punctuation) with appropriate citation of sources. It is expected that the use of quotations will be limited, no more than two quotations per paper (1 point will be deducted for each quote over the limit). Use the APA guidelines and the General Guidelines for Papers in N5366 throughout this paper.  Up to 0.5 points will be deducted for each grammar, spelling, punctuation, or format error. Content errors will be greater point deduction. (10 pts)