Analyze the use of a theoretical framework or model in a research study.Conducting a nursing research study without a firm theoretical framework is like taking a road trip without a map.

Week 3: The Role of Theoretical Frameworks in Research
Conducting a nursing research study without a firm theoretical framework is like taking a road trip without a map. You may have a final destination in mind, with an idea of several stops that you would like to make on the way, but without a map you will be unlikely to meet the goals and milestones you set for your trip. Similarly, if you undertake a research study without using a theoretical framework as a guide, your study may lack direction and ultimately fail in providing scholarly, reliable results that inform evidence-based nursing practice. Selecting an appropriate theoretical framework is a crucial step that allows researchers to refine their questions, formulate hypotheses, identify target populations, and choose effective research techniques and designs.

This week, you are introduced to how theory drives research and how research grounded in theory can contribute to evidence-based practice. You examine many current theories and models and you consider their value to nursing research.

Learning Objectives
Students will:
Analyze the use of a theoretical framework or model in a research study
Evaluate the importance of using theories and models to guide research
Photo Credit: [AndreyPopov]/[Collection:iStock / Getty Images Plus]/Getty Images

Learning Resources
Note: To access this week’s required library resources, please click on the link to the Course Readings List, found in the Course Materials section of your Syllabus.

Required Readings
Polit, D. F., & Beck, C. T. (2017). Nursing research: Generating and assessing evidence for nursing practice (10th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Wolters Kluwer.

Chapter 2, “Evidence-Based Nursing: Translating Research Evidence into Practice” (Review pages 14–31)
Chapter 6, “Theoretical Frameworks”

In this chapter, you are introduced to the concept of theories, models, and frameworks and how they serve as the foundation for research. The chapter examines key theories for both quantitative and qualitative research. Finally, critiquing frameworks in research reports is detailed.
Cantrell, M. A. (2011). Demystifying the research process: Understanding a descriptive comparative research design. Pediatric Nursing, 37(4), 188–189.

Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.

This article discusses the primary aspects of a prominent quantitative research design as used in a specific research study. The author analyzes the advantages and disadvantages of the design, along with the rationale for choosing that design.

Finn, P. (2011). Critical thinking: Knowledge and skills for evidence-based practice. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 42(1), 69–72.

Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.

This article responds to the assertion that “rational or critical thinking is an essential complement to evidence-based practice.” The author stipulates how critical thinking is relevant to EBP, what skills and thinking dispositions are important, and how thinking can go wrong.

Tagney, J., & Haines, C. (2009). Using evidence-based practice to address gaps in nursing knowledge. British Journal of Nursing (BJN), 18(8), 484–489.

Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.

This article illuminates key barriers to undertaking and implementing nursing research. The authors suggest a framework for improving the implementation of evidence and research.

Media
Laureate Education (Producer). (2012i). Selecting a framework. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Note: The approximate length of this media piece is 3 minutes.

This animated video shows the process of selecting a particular research framework. The video follows a specific scenario in which a researcher considers several possible frameworks and selects the most appropriate one.

Accessible player


 

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