Fall Week 1 - Introducing Research

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13 Dec 2011

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List sources of evidence.
Empirical Evidence: evidence rooted in objective reality and gathered through the senses rather than
personal beliefs or guesses;
Disciplined research;
Logical reasoning;
Trial and error;
Personal experience.
Most closely allied with quantitative research: systematic reasoning, numbers and control.
Positivist Paradigm: traditional scientific approach to conducting research. Believe in purpose, cause
and effect. Positivists seek to be objective at all times. Calls for orderly, disciplined procedures to test
the researcher's ideas about the nature of the phenomena in question and relationships among them.
Most closely allied with qualitative research: collecting and analyzing narrative, subjective
Naturalistic Paradigm: Assumes that knowledge is maximized when the distance between researcher
and subject is minimized. The voices and interpretations of those under study are key to
understanding the phenomena.
What are the purposes of nursing research?
General purpose is to answer questions or solve problems of relevance to the nursing profession.
Identification: when so little is known about the phenomena, it has yet to be identified or
named. Qualitative research would ask "what is this phenomenon?" and "what is its name?".
Description: main objective of nursing research is the description and explanation of
phenomena related to the nursing profession. Researchers observe, count, describe, and
classify. Used by both quantitative and qualitative researchers.
Exploration: investigates the full nature of the phenomenon and the other factors to which it is
Explanation: understanding the underpinnings of specific natural phenomena and explaining
systematic relationships among phenomena.
Prediction and Control: even though some phenomena are not well understood, it is still
possible to predict and control based on research findings.
Specific purposes include:
Fall Week 1 - Introducing Research
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