Framing the Hypothesis
Charles G Durbin Jr MD FAARC
The Research Process
Devising and Improving a Hypothesis
An Example of Moving From a Broad Hypothesis to a Manageable
Determining What Type of Controls to Use
Deciding Exactly What Data to Collect
Novice Researchers Should Find and Use a Research Mentor
Having a questioning attitude is the fist step in the research process. Research begins with a
question, which leads to a hypothesis. Questions abound in our daily clinical lives. Most quality
research consists of comparisons. By carefully selecting a comparison group or condition, the
quality of the research project can be improved. By including in the hypothesis the comparison
group, the experiment can be focused and the analysis simplified. The best questions come from the
investigator’s subject of interest. When starting a research project, start small and choose an
experienced mentor. Key words: research, study design, research methodology, scientific method. [Respir
Care 2004;49(10):1195–1198. © 2004 Daedalus Enterprises]
Respiratory care research is an important activity for the
individual and the profession. Research that leads to
changes in practice can improve patient outcomes, improve health care processes, and increase job satisfaction
for clinicians. Though we often think of research as a
Charles G Durbin Jr MD FAARC is affiliated with the Department of
Anesthesiology, University of Virginia Health System, Charlottesville,
Charles G Durbin Jr MD FAARC presented a version of this article at the
RESPIRATORY CARE Journal symposium, “How to Write and Present a
Successful OPEN FORUM Abstract,” at the 47th International Respiratory
Congress, held December 1–4, 2001, in San Antonio, Texas.
Correspondence: Charles G Durbin Jr MD FAARC, Department of Anesthesiology, University of Virginia Health Science Center, PO... [continues]
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