Kath Peters

Florence Nightingale RCNi challenge page

Be more Florence: why the voices of nurse and midwifery researchers must be heard

Nurses and midwives should unite to progress nursing and midwifery research agendas

Research framework

Finding the right approach to theoretical frameworks in qualitative research

An introduction to five Nurse Researcher articles on the use of theoretical frameworks

Brain injury

Use of pragmatism to explore women’s experiences of traumatic brain injury: a...

Background Although more men than women sustain a traumatic brain injury (TBI), approximately one quarter of people with TBIs are women. The experiences of TBI reported in the literature are informed from the masculine perspective and do not adequately represent women’s experiences. Pragmatism provides an overarching methodological framework to explore and critique a broader perspective of health, including psychosocial, cultural, spiritual, political and environmental factors, while attempting to address gender inequity. Aim To describe the philosophical background validating the use of pragmatism to research women’s experiences of TBI. Discussion Given the limited understanding of the interplay of socially constructed barriers with the complex impairments women have following TBI, a novel approach to research is required. Pragmatism offers a way to incorporate critical thinking and advocacy into research designs. Conclusion The critical feminist transformative framework presented in this paper demonstrates the strengths of using pragmatism as a framework to explore complex phenomena. Implications for practice This paper illustrates how methodology, which is influenced by various philosophical perspectives, can be woven throughout the design of a research project.

An exemplar of naturalistic inquiry in general practice research

Background Before beginning any research project, novice researchers must consider which methodological approach will best address their research questions. The paucity of literature describing a practical application of naturalistic inquiry adds to the difficulty they may experience. Aim To provide a practical example of how naturalistic inquiry was applied to a qualitative study exploring collaboration between registered nurses and general practitioners working in Australian general practice. Discussion Naturalistic inquiry is not without its critics and limitations. However, by applying the axioms and operational characteristics of naturalistic inquiry, the authors captured a detailed ‘snapshot’ of collaboration in general practice in the time and context that it occurred. Conclusion Using qualitative methods, naturalistic inquiry provides the scope to construct a comprehensive and contextual understanding of a phenomenon. No individual positivist paradigm could provide the level of detail achieved in a naturalistic inquiry. Implications for practice This paper presents a practical example of naturalistic inquiry for the novice researcher. It shows that naturalistic inquiry is appropriate when the researcher seeks a rich and contextual understanding of a phenomenon as it exists in its natural setting.

Debriefing

Debriefing as a form of reflection and catharsis for researchers

Background The collection of sensitive data can arouse emotional reactions and researchers may have difficulty distancing themselves from personal stories. Debriefing can address the emotional effect of an experience on researchers. Aim To explore the debrief responses of three research assistants who were involved in the review of retrospective charts and medical notes in a study that examined the risk factors for readmission in young people with anorexia nervosa. Discussion Based on a review of the responses, the principal research team reflected on the value and effectiveness of a debrief tool for research assistants entering sensitive quantitative data. The paper highlights these reflections. Conclusion The use of an electronic debrief tool, while not without its challenges, provides an opportunity for individual reflection and a platform for emotional release for researchers engaged in sustained and intensive collection of sensitive data. This type of tool may serve as a guide for research teams and assist them in monitoring the well-being of those collecting sensitive data. We also advocate that a debriefing tool may contribute to closure for research assistants who become emotionally invested and affected by meticulous quantitative data entry. Implications for practice This paper provides recommendations for future use of an electronic debrief tool for researchers collecting sensitive data.

A partnership model for a reflective narrative for researcher and participant

Background Conceptual frameworks are important to ensure a clear underpinning research philosophy. Further, the use of conceptual frameworks can support structured research processes. Aim To present a partnership model for a reflective narrative for researcher and participant. Discussion This paper positions the underpinning philosophical framework of the model in social constructionism (the idea that jointly constructed understandings form the basis for shared assumptions) and narrative enquiry. The model has five stages – study design, invitation to share a research space and partnership, a metaphorical research space, building a community story, and reading the community story to others. Core principles of the partnership model are continual reflection by the researcher, potential reflections by participants, reciprocal sharing, and partnership in research. Conclusion A ‘trajectory of self’ for both participants and researchers can be enhanced within reflective partnerships. Implications for practice This model can be applied to studies that use narrative enquiry and are seeking a humanistic approach with participant engagement.

Debriefing as a form of reflection and catharsis for researchers

Background: The collection of sensitive data can arouse emotional reactions and researchers may have difficulty distancing themselves from personal stories. Debriefing can address the emotional effect of an experience on researchers. Aim: To explore the debrief responses of three research assistants who were involved in the review of retrospective charts and medical notes in a study that examined the risk factors for readmission in young people with anorexia nervosa. Discussion: Based on a review of the responses, the principal research team reflected on the value and effectiveness of a debrief tool for research assistants entering sensitive quantitative data. The paper highlights these reflections. Conclusion: The use of an electronic debrief tool, while not without its challenges, provides an opportunity for individual reflection and a platform for emotional release for researchers engaged in sustained and intensive collection of sensitive data. This type of tool may serve as a guide for research teams and assist them in monitoring the well-being of those collecting sensitive data. We also advocate that a debriefing tool may contribute to closure for research assistants who become emotionally invested and affected by meticulous quantitative data entry. Implications for practice: This paper provides recommendations for future use of an electronic debrief tool for researchers collecting sensitive data.

A partnership model for a reflective narrative for researcher and participant

Background Conceptual frameworks are important to ensure a clear underpinning research philosophy. Further, the use of conceptual frameworks can support structured research processes. Aim To present a partnership model for a reflective narrative for researcher and participant. Discussion This paper positions the underpinning philosophical framework of the model in social constructionism (the idea that jointly constructed understandings form the basis for shared assumptions) and narrative enquiry. The model has five stages – study design, invitation to share a research space and partnership, a metaphorical research space, building a community story, and reading the community story to others. Core principles of the partnership model are continual reflection by the researcher, potential reflections by participants, reciprocal sharing, and partnership in research. Conclusion: A 'trajectory of self' for both participants and researchers can be enhanced within reflective partnerships. Implications for practice This model can be applied to studies that use narrative enquiry and are seeking a humanistic approach with participant engagement.

Adaptation and validation of a survey instrument measuring perceived preparedness of...

Background In Australia, a significant percentage of bachelor of nursing students are employed in the aged care sector, or in aged care settings, as assistants in nursing (AINs) or personal care assistants. However the value of aged care in nursing education is often overlooked. Aim To outline the adaptation and validation of a survey, originally developed for medical graduates, for use with nursing graduates. Discussion Adaptation of the instrument was undertaken as part of a doctoral study that aimed to explore whether employment as an undergraduate assistant in nursing (AIN) in aged care prepares new graduates for clinical work. Conclusion Outlining each step of the modification process can help nurse researchers who want to adapt existing instruments to meet their research objectives. Implications for practice Undergraduate AIN employment has the potential to supplement clinical learning without the restrictions inherent in the student role. Furthermore, it has the potential to enhance recruitment and retention in the aged care sector.

Conducting qualitative research in the context of pre-existing peer and collegial...

Aim To highlight issues and challenges faced in recruitment and interviewing during a study that sought to explore the transition of nurses into academic life and the associated ethical implications.

Background This paper explores the challenges faced in conducting research where the potential participants are peers and workplace colleagues. There are advantages when conducting research with those among whom a pre-existing relationship is shared. However, difficulties can also arise.

Review methods A methodological review was undertaken. Key database searches included CINAHL, MEDLINE, PubMed, Scopus and Google Scholar using the keywords as search terms. Studies were included if they described in detail issues surrounding qualitative interviewing of peers and colleagues.

Discussion Management of the issues involved is discussed, with emphasis on boundaries, trust and rapport, the use of self-disclosure and maintaining confidentiality.

Conclusion Research involving peers and colleagues has received relatively little consideration in the literature. There are difficulties associated with interviewing participants with whom the researcher has a pre-existing and ongoing relationship in the same organisation. To ensure ethical conduct, strategies can be used to mitigate negative situations such as issues surrounding dual roles, practising reflexivity, trust and rapport, self-disclosure and confidentiality.

Implications for research/practice It is imperative that dual roles are declared and acknowledged. Researchers need to be mindful of the difficulties that may occur and prioritise participants’ confidentiality and privacy.