Critical Appraisal QUALitative Research
Tips from Cardiff University RSSDP course
by Fiona Morgan on 13th February 2012
- Vast literature
(1.4 million academics papers published in 32,000 peer-reviewed scientific journals worldwide)
- But limited time to read
- This is actually how to trash the paper
- Methodology should be presented clearly to the readers in order to replicate, assess the quality of your work.
Asking general questions
- What is this paper about?
- Is it relevant to what you are looking for
- Do I trust it? – Methodology
- What are the results? (The last question!)
- Interpretive / subjective e.g., Meaning, experiences, feelings or insights
- Variety of methods
- Focuses in understanding how people think, behave in a particular way.
- Language used in qualitative research mostly are user-unfriendly and difficult to read
Assessing qualitative research
- Do we have confidence in the results?
- Can they be applied in similar settings?
- appropriate design, methodology and process?
- Clear statement of aims?
- What is the purpose
- What outcomes are expected?
- The above should be in the introduction
- Research question – SPICE
- Is a qualitative methodology appropriate?
- Was the recruitment strategy appropriate to the research aims?
- From where?
- Who did it?
- What sample size?
- Why people did/did not take part? - Selection bias
- Were the data collected in a way that considered the research issue?
- Is it clear?
- Where was the study set?
- how were data collected?
- How ere they recorded?
- Were method modified?
- Have ethical issues been taken into consideration?
- Ethical approval
- How was the research explained to the participants e.g., expectation, timescale.
- Was informed consent obtained?
- Reflexivity (research bias)
- Is the research role examined?