Critiquing Nursing Research Articles: Safety Research

Submitter Information

Author: Zane Robinson Wolf, PhD, RN, FAAN
Title: Dean and Professor
Institution: La Salle University
Coauthors: Diane M. Breckenridge, PhD, RN

Competency Category(s)
Evidence-Based Practice, Informatics, Safety

Learner Level(s)
Pre-Licensure BSN, RN to BSN

Learner Setting(s)

Strategy Type

Learning Objectives

  • Critique selected nursing research studies. o Prior to taking the critique test, complete in-class critiques of three published nursing research studies using guidelines. o Complete a graded test, a critique of one published research study using guidelines.
  • Apply qualitative or quantitative critique guidelines to research study addressing patient safety.
  • Compare study to published research after consulting several databases, including Cochran, CINAHL, and Medline.
  • Describe two strengths of the study.
  • Describe two weaknesses of the study.
  • Discuss application of study results to a clinical setting.

Strategy Overview

In this research assignment, students prepare to take a critique test scheduled during the latter part of an undergraduate nursing research course. Earlier in the course schedule, students complete in-class critiques of three research studies, including qualitative and quantitative examples. Students will receive the article before the test, so that they are able to prepare for the test and complete the learning objectives. They bring the article and their notes to the test. The articles represent current research on patient safety topics that faculty select such as: • Chiang, H-Y., & Pepper, G. A. (2006). Barriers to nurses’ reporting of medication administration errors in Taiwan, Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 38(4), 393-399. (A sample test has been constructed based on this study). • Ebright, P. R., Urden, L., Patterson, E., & Chalko, B. (2004). Themes surrounding novice nurse near-miss and adverse-event situations. JONA, 34, 531-538. • Eisenhauer, L. A., Hurley, A. C., & Dolan, N. (2007). Nurses’ reported thinking during medication administration. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 39(1), 82-87. • Wolf, Z. R., Hicks, R., & Serembus, J. F. (2006). Characteristics of medication errors made by students during the administration phase: A descriptive study. Journal of Professional Nursing, 22(1), 39-51. • Dennison, R. B. (2007). A medication safety education program to reduce the risk of harm caused by medication errors. Journal of Continuing education in Nursing, 38(4), 176-184. • Meurier, C. E., Vincent, C. A., & Parmar, D. G. (1997). Learning from errors in nursing practice. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 26, 111-119.
Faculty distribute the study to be critiqued and the content domains of the test map at least two weeks before the scheduled critique exam.
See the two test maps, one for a qualitative safety research study, one a quantitative research study. Also, note an example of a test on one study identified in the studies cited for critique. Guidelines for critiquing a study are also listed.

Submitted Materials


Additional Materials

Evaluation Description

Two test maps and one critique exam are included in the file.