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Chapter 3 An Overview of Quantitative Research

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1 Chapter 3 An Overview of Quantitative Research

2 Learning Objective 1 List the steps in conducting quantitative research

3 Quantitative vs Qualitative
Quantitative research: is concerned with objectivity, tight controls over the research situation, and the ability to generalize findings. Qualitative research: is concerned with the subjective meaning of an experience to an individual.

4 Quantitative Research Steps
Number varies from author to author Macnee (2004)= uses 5 steps Stommel &Wills (2004)= identified 9 steps Burns & Grove(2005)= listed 17 steps Polit and Beck (2004)= identified 18 steps Authors combine several steps into one step

5 Scientific Research Process
Occurs always in an orderly fashion Consists of a number of steps

6 Quantitative

7 Qualitative

8 Steps for Quantitative Research
Identify the problem Determine the purpose of the study Review the literature Develop a theoretical/conceptual framework Identify the study assumptions Acknowledge the limitations of the study Formulate the hypothesis or research question Define study variables/terms

9 Steps for Quantitative Research
Select the research design Identify the population Select the sample Conduct a pilot study Collect the data Organize the data for analysis Analyze the data

10 Steps for Quantitative Research
Interpret the findings Communicate the findings Utilize the findings

11 Learning Objective 2 Discuss the steps in quantitative research

12 Identify the Problem Start with broad topic area
Narrow to specific problem statement

13 Identify the Problem Get study problem from Personal experiences
Literature sources Prior research Theory testing

14 Identify the Problem State problem as a question
Include population and variables

15 Concepts and Constructs
Concepts are abstractions of particular aspects of human behavior or characteristics (e.g., pain, weight). Constructs are slightly more complex abstractions (e.g., self-care). Theories and conceptual models knit concepts into a coherent system that purports to explain phenomena.

16 Variable A characteristic or quality that takes on different values, i.e., that varies from one person to the next Examples: Blood type Weight Length of stay in hospital Term “variable” is used almost exclusively in quantitative research

17 Types of Variables Continuous (e.g. height, weight) vs. categorical (e.g., marital status, gender) Attribute variable vs. created variable Independent variable—the presumed cause (of a dependent variable) Dependent variable—the presumed effect (of an independent variable) Often referred to as the outcome variable or outcome Example: Smoking (IV)  Lung cancer (DV)

18 Determine the Purpose Difference between purpose and problem
Problem tells what is studied Purpose tells why study is done Studies may have one or both

19 Review the Literature Finds out what exists on the topic
Helps look at theory/framework Helps address the study methods

20 Review the Literature Search a variety of sources
Indexes Abstracts Dissertations Computer searches Continue until time to collect data

21 Develop a Theoretical/Conceptual Framework
Research helps test, develop, refine theories Process assists in selection of study variables Directs the hypothesis and interprets findings Answers the “so what” question(s) Adds to our nursing body of knowledge

22 Identify the Study Assumptions
Assumptions are beliefs held to be true but not proven Each research study is based upon assumptions

23 Identify the Study Assumptions
Assumptions are necessary because Influence the questions asked Affect the data gathered Help with methods of data collection Assist in the interpretation of the data

24 Three Types of Study Assumptions
Universal assumption Theory or research assumptions Assumptions needed to do the study Common sense assumptions

25 Acknowledge the Limitations of the Study
Limitations are uncontrolled variables Affect study results Limit generalization of the findings Extraneous variables Explain limitations at end of study

26 Formulate Hypothesis or Research Question
Hypothesis predicts relationships between variables Hypothesis provides predicted answer to question Hypothesis contains two types of variables Independent variable Dependent variable

27 Formulate Hypothesis or Research Question
Hypothesis is testable empirically Types of hypothesis vary Hypothesis mostly in quantitative studies Directional Nondirectional The Null hypothesis

28 Define the Study Variables/Terms
They must be clear to researcher and reader The definitions may be Dictionary Theoretical Operational The operational definition: indicates how a variable will be observed and measured. It includes the instrument will be used to measure the variables.

29 Select the Research Design
Helps determine how study is planned Varies with the type of study conducted Quantitative vs. qualitative Experimental vs. non-experimental Experimental may be divided True experimental Quasi-experimental Pre-experimental

30 Non-experimental designs:
Survey studies Correlational studies Comparative studies Methodological studies

31 Identify the Population
Is a complete set of individuals or objects that have some common characteristic of interest to the researcher. Target or the universe: is made up of the group of people or objects to which the researcher wishes to generalize the findings of a study. Accessible: group that actually available for study.

32 Select the Sample A subgroup of the population
It represents the population It helps with generalization

33 Select the Sample Types of samples Voluntary aspect of participation
Probability samples: chosen by random selection process in which each member of the population has a chance of being in the sample. Nonprobability samples Voluntary aspect of participation Permission secured and rights protected

34 Conduct a Pilot Study Similar in all aspects of the study
It helps examine issues Design Sample size Data collection procedures Data analysis approaches

35 Conduct a Pilot Study It helps tests/evaluates instruments
Revisions made after pilot is completed

36 Collect the Data Data are the pieces of information or facts
Data collection procedures are followed

37 Collect the Data Questions asked are What data? How is it collected?
Who collects the data? Where is it collected? When will it be collected?

38 Organize the Data for Analysis
This step is planned from the beginning It uses the help of a statistician Decisions are made about missing data

39 Analyze the Data The process is easier now
Data is placed into computerized statistical packages Results are analyzed

40 Interpret the Findings
Do the data support the research hypothesis? Do the data not support the research hypothesis? Problems encountered are discussed Limitations of the study are presented Results are compared with other studies Implications are identified Recommendations are proposed

41 Communicate the Findings
A very critical component of the process A variety of ways are used Journals Presentations Posters

42 Utilize the Findings Recommendations need considerations
Integration into practice are critical components Researcher may act as a consultant for using findings Researcher must disseminate findings in many ways

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