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Introduction to Research

RADS 5003 - Research Methods I

Kevin Clark

on 18 October 2017

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Transcript of Introduction to Research

Research is a process of inquiry and investigation.

Review or synthesize existing knowledge
Investigate existing situations or problems
Provide solutions to problems
Explore and analyze more general issues
Construct or create new procedures or systems
Explain new phenomenon
Generate new knowledge
Or a combination of any of the above
Stages of the Research Process

RADS 5003
Research Methods I

An Overview to Conducting Research
Establish a general field of interest. A strong interest will carry you during the difficulties, delays, and irritations some researchers experience.

Why are you interested in the subject/topic?

Think about your research title and possible approaches.
It is essential to know what work has been done previously in the topic area.

What was purpose of the study, how was research conducted, what were the results/findings, what were the limitations and weaknesses?

Conducting a literature review will help develop an appropriate research methodology.
Presented by

Kevin R. Clark, EdD, RT(R)
Classified by Focus
Research gives the opportunity to confirm, clarify, pursue, or even discover new aspects of a topic of interest.
Research is systematic, methodical, and ethical. It helps solve practical problems and increase knowledge.
Classified by Purpose
Undertaken when few or no previous studies exist.
Aim is to look for patterns, hypotheses, or ideas that can be tested and will form the basis for further research.
Discover ideas and insights.
Used to identify and classify the elements or characteristics of the subject.
Aim is to define and describe.
Used to identify cause and effect relationships (correlation).
Also known as explanatory.
Aim is to predict how one phenomenon will change in response to a variation in another phenomenon.

by exploring relationships among

Anything that is measured or manipulated in the study.
must be precisely defined to determine whether a relationship exists between them.
Solve problems?
The term
refers to the overall approaches and perspectives of the study.
Who you studied
What data you collected
Where you collected it
Why you collected it
How you collected it
How you analyzed it
Reviewing the Literature
Choosing a Topic of Interest
Gain Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval.

Obtain informed consent.

Prepare data collection tools (instrumentation). Request permission to use a previous tool or create your own.

If necessary, conduct a pilot study (small scale study with more limitations) to test the instrument and the process.

Observe and measure behavior of participants.
Conducting the Study
Descriptive statistics

Inferential statistics

Thematic analysis (triangulation)
Analyzing the Results
Research report

Journal publication

Poster presentation

Conference presentation
Reporting the Results
Focuses on the
with which a measurement is taken.
Instrument reliability
: consistency of measurement by a particular instrument (test-retest reliability).

Intrarater reliability
: consistency with which an individual takes measurements.

Interrater reliability
: consistency in measurements among individuals taking the measurements.

Strategies to Enhance Reliability in a Study

Standardize administration and scoring procedures (detailed instructions, same instructions, use of checklist, Likert items, etc.)

Two P Rule: protocol and practice (standard protocol that has been practiced)

Pilot study
Indicates the usefulness or appropriateness of the data being gathered (
Measurement or Test Validity

Face validity
: Does the measurement appear to be appropriate?

Construct validity
: To what degree is a measurement based on theory?

Content validity
: Is the measurement broad enough to address the scope of the content?

Criterion Validity
: How useful is the measurement when compared to a standard?
Predictive: Is GRE predictive of student performance in graduate school?
Concurrent: Should passing this test allow student credit for the class?

Design or Experimental Validity

Internal validity
: Refers to the truthfulness of an assertion that A caused B.

External validity
: Concerned with factors that may affect the generalizability of the conclusions drawn from the study.

Strategies to Enhance Validity in a Study

Triangulation of sources

Limit those factors or conditions that threaten internal and external validity
To Be Good Researchers...

Work well with a wide variety of people.
Understand specific methods used to conduct research.
Understand the subject of study.
Convince someone to fund the study.
Stay on track and on schedule.
Speak and write persuasively.

Bordens, K. S., & Abbott, B. B. (2014).
Research design and methods: A process approach
(9th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw Hill Companies.

Forister, J. G., & Blessing, J. D. (2016).
Introduction to research and medical literature
(4th ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Google Images. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.google.com

Neville, C. (Ed.). (2007).
Introduction to research and reseach methods.
Effective Learning Service: Bradford University School of Management.

YouTube. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com
Research Questions
Ask answerable questions
Empirical Questions
Ask important questions
Predictions about the relationships among variables.
makes a prediction that no significant difference exists between variables.
makes a prediction there will be a difference
not certain if increase or decrease.
makes a prediction there will be a difference
certain if increase or decrease.
How does fatigue affect the ability to solve problems?
Which method of positioning lateral knees results in the most consistent superimposition of the condyles?
How can we staff the department to reduce overtime hours?
What pre-admission data are the best predictors of successful completion of a radiography program?

Healthcare professionals must understand research processes to interpret healthcare literature:
The decision to incorporate a new treatment modality depends on the ability to assess and understand the research that led to that modality.
Healthcare professionals must evaluate the literature in terms of how it relates to patients and determine the best treatment options.
Performed in the clinical setting where control over variables is quite difficult (drug trials, therapeutic results)

Designed to answer a practical question, to help people do their jobs better (evaluating different types of interventions with the same purpose)

Performed in laboratory surroundings that are tightly controlled (basic science research)
for the Study
Acuity or seriousness
Human, time, and financial costs
Contribution to knowledge
Replication may be indicated, valuable, and needed
Extending the generalizations of the findings
Establishing credibility
Reducing errors (types I and II)
Providing support for developing theories
Patient attitudes toward healthcare professionals
Best healthcare profession to provide a service
Attitudes of healthcare professionals toward specific patient populations (people with HIV/AIDS, minorities, gays and lesbians)
Does the degree level of the healthcare professional improve the quality of patient care?
Differences in professional healthcare practice by site (hospital, clinic, nursing home, etc.)
Learning styles of students in the healthcare professions
Impact of healthcare professionals on health care in medically undeserved areas
Professional healthcare malpractice and liability
How do athletic teams build player loyalty?
Goal alignment
How often do Americans "neighbor"?
Social evening with someone in your neighborhood about once a month or more often...
1975-60% married and 65% singles
1998-45% married and 50% singles
How does social context influence adolescent outcomes?
Neighborhood characteristics affect youth outcomes by influencing the extent of parental monitoring and the quality of peer groups.
Descriptive statistics
describe the characteristics of data and are concerned with issues such as 'What is the average length of hospitalization of a group of patients?'

Inferential statistics
are used to address issues such as whether the differences in average lengths of hospitalization of patients in two groups are significantly different statistically.
Protect the rights and welfare of human subject participan

Educational research involving normal educational practices such as comparing different curricula or instructional techniques
Surveys (not involving children) that collect information that would not likely pose a risk to those completing the survey if their answers were released
Chart reviews of health information that is both preexisting and not traceable back to the individual
Research involving minimal risk procedures (simple venipuncture, physical examinations, MR procedures not involving contrast, surveys, interviews, and focus groups)
Review by a meeting of the IRB
Basic Elements of Informed Consent
Statement the study involves research
Description of any foreseeable risks or discomforts
Alternative procedures or treatment, if any
Injury-related care or compensation
Contact information
Participation remains voluntary
Additional information requested by IRB
Writing Myths and Facts

M: I'm a care provider, not a writer.
F: Writing is not a career but a necessary skill for medical professionals.

M: I don't have any talent for writing. I've always been bad at it.
F: Writing is a skill, not a talent. Medical professionals should learn to write effectively.

M: If a piece of writing gets published, it's a good piece of writing.
F: Many published medical papers are badly written.

M: Why should I bother publishing if it won't help my career?
F: Publishing a paper in respected peer-reviewed journals has substantial academic value and generates career-enhancing opportunities.
Examines the relationship between variables (independent, dependent, and extraneous)
Uses hypotheses to make predictions (null, directional, or nondirectional)
Data in the form of numbers
Statistics to crunch numbers
Statistical report (concrete)
Explores the meaning of people's experiences, cultures, feelings, perceptions, etc.
Does not use hypotheses
Data in the form of words (multiple sources of data-triangulation)
Creating themes
Contains a lot of quotes from participants (interpretive)
manipulated by the researcher
impacted by the independent variable
extra characteristics (age, sex, race, etc.)
How well have we done our research?
Research Question
Do peppermints affect the MSRS Comp Exam scores?

Null Hypothesis
There is no statistically significant correlation between MSRS Comp Exam scores and peppermint candy consumption.

Non-Directional Hypothesis
There is a statistically significant correlation between MSRS Comp Exam scores and peppermint candy consumption.

Directional Hypothesis
There is a statistically significant positive correlation between MSRS Comp Exam scores and peppermint candy consumption.
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