This is a primary, comprehensive textbook for people who are considering undertaking a piece of health-related research. It is an accessible companion with the aim of getting the reader to think broadly about all of the issues that need to be considered when embarking on a project. This is a pragmatic book, a step-by-step guide to research which mirrors the structure of a research project, taking you through the thought process for designing and conducting your study from formulating the right research question at idea inception, ascertaining what methodologies and analysis can answer what type of questions, right through to dissemination, all presented in an easy, digestible style. The book is full of case study illustrations and practical tips such as how to work out a research budget and obtaining funding for your project, discussion of what permissions need to obtained when conducting research with people, and how to involve public and patients. The authors are all experienced researchers and so this book is an accumulation of collective wisdom on common research challenges and issues.
Chapter 3: Critical Appraisal
- Understand what is meant by critical appraisal
- Why critical appraisal is crucial for research and clinical practice
- Understand the concepts of validity and reliability
- How to locate and use resources regarding critical appraisal including checklists
- Know what key questions should be asked of which methodology
Critical appraisal is the structured process of examining a piece of research in order to determine its strengths and limitations. Put simply, critical appraisal focuses on whether we can ‘believe’ a study, i.e. whether it is sufficiently free of bias. This is also known as ‘internal validity’. Bias technically means a systematic error, where a particular research finding deviates from a ‘true’ finding. The design of the research and how it has been carried out, ...