Research Methods

General Information
Duration 1 semester (14 teaching weeks)
Level Year 2, Semester 3
Unit Weighting Unit Credit Points: 10 credit points
Total Course Credit Points: 320 credit points
Student Workload Number of timetabled hours per week: 4
Number of personal study hours per week: 6
Total workload hours per week: 10
Prerequisites/ Corequisites PRI104: Communication in Health
Academic Details
Description This unit of study focuses on developing basic research knowledge and skills such as the critical review of literature, data collection, developing research questions, and the ability to analyse and evaluate the scientific process. The unit will nurture the development of scientific thinking in Chinese medicine, and encourage critical thinking to ensure the ongoing acquisition of knowledge and the critique of its application in practice.

This unit will include defining research, the scope of research, data collation, understanding statistics, research methodologies, and the evaluation and critique of research publications. Basic skills, such as performing and writing a literature review will be addressed. Emphasis will be placed on research methodologies relevant to Chinese medicine.

Learning outcomes Upon completion of this unit students should be able to:

  1. Conduct a literature review in both contemporary Chinese medicine and relevant health sciences, and also identify a research question within the context of healthcare
  2. Describe and explain the concepts and principles of research and evaluation in the health sciences; Identify and describe the basic types of investigation found in health study as they relate to evaluation of healthcare practice, programs and policy development
  3. Describe statistical measurement procedures and apply accurate measurement procedures in selected research and clinical settings
  4. Identify the unique features of research and outline recent research findings in Chinese medicine; Critically evaluate, appraise and critique examples from published health science research, especially in Chinese medicine
Unit requirement To successfully complete the unit, students must: attend 80% of all the tutorial classes; attempt all assessment tasks including summative and formative assessments and achieve at least 50% of the total marks.
Assessment Assessment 1: Quiz (30%)

Assessment 2: Literature Review (40%)

Assessment 3: Presentation (30%)

Prescribed text * The prescribed and recommended readings are subject to annual review.

Polgar, S., & Thomas, S. A. (2013). Introduction to research in the health sciences (6th ed.). Edinburgh; New York: Elsevier.

Recommended readings Berglund, C.A. (2012) Ethics for Health Care. Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

CONSORT and STRICTA statements

Creswell, J.W. (2013).  Research design: Qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods approaches (4th ed.). California: SAGE Publications.

Critical Appraisal Skills Programme (CASP) 2014.CASP Checklists (URL used) Oxford. CASP

Domholdt, E. (2000) Physical Therapy Research.

Hoffman, T., Bennett, S., & Del Mar, C. (2013). Evidence based practice across the health professions. Sydney: Churchill Livingston

MacPherson H. (eds.) (2008) Acupuncture research: Strategies for establishing an evidence base. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.

Philadelphia:WB Saunders.Gravetter, F. J. &Wallnau, L. B. (2011). Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences (9th ed.). Cengage Australia.

Physiotherapy Evidence Database (PEDro) Checklist

Portney, L.G., & Watkins, M.P. (2009). Foundations of clinical research: Applications to practice (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River: Pearson/Prentice Hall.

Nagy, S., Mills, J., Waters, D., & Birks, M. (2010). Using research in healthcare practice. Philadelphia, Pa. Sydney: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Neuman, L.W. (2010) Social Research Methods: Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches. Pearson Education.

Riegelman, R. K. (2012). Studying a study and testing a test: How to read the medical evidence (5th ed.). Philadelphia, Pa.: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Walliman, N. (2010). Research Methods: The Basics, Taylor & Francis.