This unit introduces students to the fundamental knowledge of the research process. It aims to provide a broad range of research designs and methodologies that are currently utilised by midwife researchers and to validate and refine existing midwifery knowledge in order to improve midwifery practice. It also presents the skills that are needed to understand and appraise a systematic review and meta-analysis, and how to appraise and use research in midwifery practice. Topics covered include the following:
Significance of research in midwifery;
Links between midwifery education, theory and practice;
Approaches to research process: qualitative and quantitative designs including mixed and triangulation methods;
Classification and characteristics of exploratory, descriptive and explanatory studies;
Steps in the research process: identification of problem statement, literature review, theoretical framework, sampling, data collection and analysis using descriptive and inferential statistics;
Ethics and research;
Disseminating and applying midwifery research;
Evaluating research reports;
Appraising a systematic review of the literature;
Utilise basic statistics for appraisal of systematic reviews, including statistical significance, chance, probability, confidence intervals, odds ratios, numbers needed to treat and pitfalls in analysis; and
Appraising the professional application of a systematic review and meta analysis to an aspect of professional midwifery practice.
On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
This unit is not compulsory for any specific course. Depending on the course you study, this unit may be taken as an elective.