Reflective accounts

Critiquing research

A CPD article enhanced Jennifer Preston’s knowledge and understanding of completing the literature review process

A CPD article enhanced Jennifer Preston’s knowledge and understanding of completing the literature review process.

Abstract

Literature reviews can help to improve evidence-based practice and promote positive change in nursing. They aim to analyse, evaluate and clarify ideas presented by various authors and summarise them. After reading the CPD article on critiquing research literature, I have gained an understanding of the process that I would use to carry out a literature review.

First I would choose a research question with a clear focus. One useful tool to help select a quantitative question is PICO (Centre for Reviews and Dissemination 2007). This defines the research question by specifying the Patient, suggesting what the Intervention may be, providing a Comparison, and considering the Outcome.

For example, I might wish to research P: patients with a bone fracture, I: oral administration of analgesia, C: transdermal administration of analgesia, and look for the outcome, O: reduction in pain intensity recorded using a visual analogue scale. Another tool, PICo (Joanna Briggs Institute 2011), may be more beneficial for qualitative questions. This uses Participant, area of Interest and Context.

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This reflective account is based on NS745 Wakefield A (2014) Searching and critiquing the research literature. Nursing Standard. 28, 39, 49-57.

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