Steps to Write a Critique Article in Apa Format 1

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                              WEBSTER UNIVERSITY
                              NURSING DEPARTMENT
                                   Summer 2007

Instructor: Kathryn A. Ballou, PhD, RN        Phone: 816-833-0524, ext 4201
Class: Tuesdays 5:30-9:30                     Email:


Elements of the research process and the application of research to clinical practice are
examined. Current research studies are analyzed, critiqued, and evaluated for application to the
clinical area. Students identify and discuss researchable nursing questions and review nursing
research literature on a selected topic. (Prerequisites: NURS 30l0, 3020, 3400, 34l0, 3420, and
PSYC 2750)


Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to:

1. Discuss the relationship of theory to nursing research.

2. Describe the research process.

3. Discuss ethical considerations in research.

4. Critically evaluate published nursing research.

5. Summarize nursing research on a selected topic.

6. Evaluate research for applicability to nursing practice.


Fain, J. A. (2004). Reading, understanding and applying nursing research. Philadelphia: Davis.

       History of nursing research
       Critiquing research
       Ethical considerations in research
       The research process
       Quantitative research
       Qualitative research
       Outcomes research
       Research problems and questions
       Literature review
       Theoretical and conceptual frameworks
       Research designs
       Application of research to practice
       Evidenced-based practice


Lecture, discussion, videos, library work, research critiques, independent study, group work.


Students will critique published nursing research articles according to guidelines outlined in the
text and discussed in class.

Critique Assignment #1: Using the critique format from the textbook, students will work in
groups to evaluate selected sections of a quantitatively designed research article. This
assignment may be spread over more than one class session, which will allow for evaluation of
critique content as presented in class.

Critique Assignment #2: Using the critique format from the textbook, students will work in
groups to evaluate a qualitatively designed research article.

Critique Assignment #3: Using the critique format from the textbook, students will evaluate
either a quantitative or qualitative nursing research article. Students select a nursing research
article that relates to an issue in their nursing practice. A clean copy of the research article must
be submitted with critique #3. This critique must be typed and follow APA format.
Literature Review Assignment:

Students will complete a literature review of nursing research articles about an issue in their
nursing practice. The purpose of this literature review involves selecting and analyzing relevant
nursing research articles, integrating the characteristics, findings, and results of the articles, and
applying the integrated literature review to practice. This paper must be typed in APA format.

Steps of the literature review process:
   1. Students will retrieve a set of nursing research articles about an issue in their nursing
       practice. Review the articles and see if the content meets your goals for your review.
       Bring selected articles to class for instructor approval. Instructor will check and verify
       articles meet assignment requirements.
   2. Once articles have received instructor approval, re-read the set of articles and clearly
       state the purpose of your review.
   3. With the purpose of your review now clearly stated, review and analyze each article.
       Develop a consistent format for reviewing and taking notes on each article. A grid or a
       set of notecards may be helpful for organizing your notes. You will want to include study
       design, sample, findings, results, implications for practice. Note any other special
       characteristics about the research study, too.
   4. Write your paper. Follow this format:
           A. Introduction
           B. Integration of Research Literature
           C. Application of Research Literature to Practice
           D. Conclusion
           E. References

           Paper should begin with an introduction that states the purpose of your literature
           review. Next, present the integrated review of literature. Integrate your notes from
           step #3 and write an integrated summary of the characteristics, findings, and results
           of all of the articles. Next, apply what was learned from the integrated summary to
           nursing practice. Compare the research literature with current practice. For example,
           you could consider whether practice needs to change or stay the same based on your
           review. Use specific examples from practice and compare to specific literature from
           your review. End the paper with a concluding paragraph.

    Class attendance and participation                 15%
    Active participation in
          critique assignments #1 and #2               20%
    Critique assignment #3                             25%
    Literature review assignment                       40%

       A - 93 - 100%       C - 76 - 85%

       B - 86 - 92%        D - 70 - 75%

*A course studied in the 8-week format carries the same expectations of work as a l6-week
semester course. A student may anticipate a minimum of 3 hours of outside study per credit
hour per week.
                          COURSE CALENDAR

       WEEK                  CONTENT                           ACTIVITIES
        One     Introduction to Course                  Text: Fain
                Historical background of nursing        Chapters 1 & 2
                Overview of research process
                Research problems/questions

         Two    The research critique                   Chapter 15, 16
                Reference searching skills              In class critiques
                Use of Databases
        Three   Research process:                       Chapters 4, 11,
                Problem identification                  In class critiques, continued
                Quantitative and Qualitative Research
                Literature review
        Four    Research process, continued:            Chapters 3, 4, 7, 9
                Theoretical frameworks                  Paper: Research articles
                Quantitative designs                    submitted to and approved by
                Hypotheses and variables                faculty
                Data Collection

         Five   Research process, continued:            Chapters 10,12-14
                Qualitative designs                     Critique #3 due
                Data Analysis
                Results and Implications
         Six    Ethical considerations in research      Chapter 2

        Seven   Evidence Based Practice                 Chapter 5
                Outcomes Research                       Final paper due?
        Eight   Application of research to practice     Chapter 17
                Course evaluation                       Final paper due?
                                                        Discussion of papers
4/06; 4/07

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