This short article provides an overview of descriptive designs the nurse may want to use in research. It explains when the design is appropriate and the strengths and limitations of the design method. Of special note is the section that discussed how to determine sample size for various versions of this design. I also provide resources that will come in hand for all nurses.
Selecting the design that best answers the question you are asking is critical to developing a good research study. However, often nurses are confused by the many different design options. When little is known about a topic- it is important to begin with descriptive designs. Understanding these designs allows the nurse conducting research to make good decisions and plan a rigorous study.
Nurses often get only a very basic overview of research designs and methodologies in school work. Thus it is important to augment your knowledge about designs, before embarking on a research study. I provide resources and a glossary as well as content on sample size calculations that event he novice researcher can followDr. Sandra L Siedlecki, PhD, RN, APRN-CNS
Clin Nurse Spec 2020 Jan/Feb;34(1):8-12
Author Affiliation: Senior Nurse Scientist and Clinical Nurse Specialist, Office of Nursing Research & Innovation, Nursing Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Ohio.
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