Research Critique

Topics: Pregnancy, Qualitative research, Nuchal scan Pages: 6 (2091 words) Published: August 24, 2011
Evidence-based practice is essential in nursing. It serves as the basis of nursing care being used today. To enable nurses further to improve such care, research becomes a necessity. One way of ensuring research study is useable and effective is by critically appraising it. This paper aims to correctly and systematically critique a chosen qualitative research article by scrutinizing its part one by one and providing a concluding comments at the end. Title and abstract

A qualitative research article’s title should compose of a central phenomenon and a group under study. It should also contain the context of the study and the research design used. More importantly it should be short and concise but long enough to convey the very meaning or purpose of the article (Polit & Beck, 2006). In the chosen article, the central phenomenon which is ‘contemplating nuchal translucency screening’ can be clearly identified. Women as the group under study can also be easily identified. However, Hawthorne and Ahern (2009) could have improved the group under study by adding specification to it. Pregnant women as opposed to women as the group under study inform readers that the focus is on child-bearing women and not just ordinary women. According to Polit and Beck, the purpose of an abstract is for the reader to review the entirety of an article and decide if it is worth reading or not (2006). They also point out that the abstract should be able to answer questions formed after reading the title. It should contain a brief background, aims, methods used, results, and conclusions of the research study (Polit& Beck, 2006). Hawthorne and Ahern (2009) did not include objectives and conclusions in their abstract but covered the other essential components. A brief description of the study was briefly presented and methods were also covered. Although findings were mentioned, it was presented insufficiently and can be confused with the study’s conclusion because it was stated only in one sentence. Furthermore, Polit and Beck (2006) state that an abstract could have 100 to 200 words. Hawthorne and Ahern’s article contains only 102 words which almost did not reach the minimum word count and can be argued as not having enough information for an abstract. The traditional laid-out paragraph is not persuasive enough to attract a reader. Although the abstract itself builds up to the title, it does clearly provide a quick synopsis of the study. Providing the purpose and setting, are clearly presenting the findings and conclusions of the study can better improve this section of the article. A new, structured format can also be used to make it look presentable and organized. Literature review

Polit and Beck (2006) state that the purpose of a literature review is to provide in-depth knowledge on a topic unknown to the reader. It shows different views and stands backed by solid evidence and theories from other studies. It focuses on what works now and compares it to what worked before hence acknowledging a gap of knowledge. In Hawthorne and Ahern’s article, the definition and purpose of nuchal translucency were clearly presented. It also provided the reader of its advantages and disadvantages to the pregnant women population. However, a brief definition of Down Syndrome should have been elaborated by the authors. Evaluation of evidence based practice was also well presented by mentioning that antenatal screenings were done for more than 25 years and Hawthorne and Ahern (2009) also informs of how such screenings are carried out in the present. The reader can determinethe article’s main problem even though it was not formally acknowledged by the authors, covering the nature of the problem and its scope. The problem of women being pressured to decide ahead whether to continue or end a pregnancy with a high-risk baby is broad and stated well in the last sentences of the second paragraph of the introduction. The article’s theoretical framework was...
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