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What is the definition of research hypothesis?

Instructions

You should obtain a Word document that contains the results of the activity. Save a copy of the document to your computer and upload a copy for instructor review to this assignment page.

Introduction

In this activity, you will be learning about the different parts of a research study.

You will first be introduced to the definitions of the concepts, then examples of the concepts are provided. The examples used in this activity will be from the article, Advanced practice nursing student knowledge in obesity management: A mixed methods research study (Fruh et al., 2019).

As you learn about each of the concepts, you will complete your own examples of the sections of your research proposal. You will begin contemplating your own research area of interest (it may be Mental Health, behavioral, or any other particular area related to Health), and generate preliminary sentences that represent each of the research terms examined in this activity.

 

1. RESEARCH TOPIC:

What is the definition of research topic?

“They are broad collections of ideas for potential research projects, related to one phenomenon of interest” (Burns & Groves, 2017, p. 76).

A research topic is the collection of concepts in a clinical area of interest that nurse researchers plan to explore or examine in their study.

There is usually not only one sentence that describes the research topic. The research topic is interspersed throughout the introduction paragraphs.

Example from the article, Advanced practice nursing student knowledge in obesity management: A mixed methods research study (Fruh et al., 2019):

 

“…APN students’ confidence of obesity management as well as satisfaction of APN curriculum on and curricular recommendations regarding obesity management” (Fruh et al., 2019, p. 59).

 

 

YOUR RESEARCH TOPIC:

(Type your Research Topic)

 

 

 

 

2. RESEARCH PROBLEM:

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What is the definition of research problem?

“A research problem is an area in which there is a gap in nursing’s knowledge base” (Burns & Groves, 2017, p. 76).

Gaps are realized or identified by performing several activities such as: consulting with experts in the field, performing a literature search in various journal databases, and/or using your own experience working in the field.

There is a general structure to writing the introduction section of the research paper. It is usually a few paragraphs long and involves a few essentials that include:

1. What is known about the research topic;

2. What is unknown about the research topic; and finally,

3. Justification for conducting the study or project.

 

Example from the article, Advanced practice nursing student knowledge in obesity management: A mixed methods research study (Fruh et al., 2019):

 

 

 What is known:

“The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists and American College of Endocrinology have recognized the substantial public health hazard obesity poses, so, together, these two professional organizations have developed an evidence-based clinical practice guideline to support healthcare providers with direction on the appropriate treatment of the diseases of overweight and obesity” (Garvey et al., 2016 cited in Fruh et. al, 2019, page 60). These guidelines provide an algorithm that includes educating and screening all patients; staging of the disease if the screen is positive; and recommending treatments that include lifestyle modification, behavioral therapy, pharmacologic therapy, and bariatric surgery. Determination of treatment is dependent on disease stage and presence of comorbid conditions (Garvey et al., 2016). The recommendations of pharmacological therapy to combat obesity are echoed by The Endocrine Society, which composed a clinical practice guideline focused primarily on anti-obesity medications (Apovian et al., 2015 cited in Fruh et. al, 2019, p. 60).

 What is Unknown or the Gap:

Healthcare providers, including nurse practitioners (NPs), family physicians, obstetrician/gynecologists, and internists have reported that more training, clinic time, resources, and reimbursement are needed for them to effectively treat patients with obesity (Petrin et al., 2016). Similarly, Brown et al. (2007) found that healthcare providers reported they do not feel confident in counseling individuals regarding weight-loss and view this as an obstacle to obesity management, yet limited evidence exists for effective obesity education in medical training programs (Vitolins et al., 2012).

Counseling confidence is a factor in providers’ ability to guide patients in management of overweight and obesity. Bleich et al. (2015) found a gap between nurses’ levels of confidence and their self-reported success in helping patients achieve personal weight-management goals.

 Justification for Proposal:

Factors that may impact the confidence of the healthcare provider to manage obesity effectively are the provider’s own body mass index (BMI; Bleich et al., 2012). Physicians (N=498) with a BMI in the overweight or obese categories (n = 230) were less likely to initiate a discussion regarding weight management with patients having obesity. This group of physicians with a BMI in the overweight or obese categories also had less confidence counseling patients with obesity on dietary and exercise recommendations.

One way to increase the number of providers who are competent in obesity management is to prepare the next generation through enhanced curriculum within advanced practice programs (American Nurse Practitioner Foundation, 2013; Keyworth et al., 2012). In turn, promotion of the self-efficacy of an Advanced Practice Nursing (APN) student may be realized through appropriate obesity-management education” (Fruh et al., 2019, p. 60).

 

YOUR RESEARCH PROBLEM:

(Type your Research Problem)

 

 

 

3. RESEARCH PURPOSE:

What is the definition of the research purpose? 

“It is a clear, concise statement of the researcher’s specific focus or aim: the reason the study was performed” (Burns & Groves, 2017, page 76).

It typically begins with “The purpose of this study is…” or “The aim of this study is…” or “The intent is to…”

Not all research articles will explicitly state their research purpose with these statements; however, it is important to make it clear within all research proposals. Thus, you should practice making your research purpose statement clear and concise.

Example from the article, Advanced practice nursing student knowledge in obesity management: A mixed methods research study (Fruh et al., 2019):

“The purpose of this study was to identify Advanced Practice Nursing (APN) students’ confidence of obesity management as well as satisfaction of APN curriculum on and curricular recommendations regarding obesity management”, (Fruh et al., 2019, p. 59).

 

 

 

YOUR RESEARCH PURPOSE:

(Type your Research Purpose)

 

 

 

 

4. RESEARCH OBJECTIVES/AIMS:

What is the definition of the research objectives or aims?

“When the author of a research study states a purpose, an objective, or an aim, this is merely an explication of an intention” (Burns & Groves, 2017, p. 99).

The objectives or aims of a study are very similar; in fact, there is little difference.

The research objectives may be provided in a list. Each objective in the list typically refers to the “different part of the study, or to a statistical consideration of certain variables and their interrelationships” (Burns & Groves, 2017, page 99).

The aims are related to what the researcher(s) envision as the outputs of the study.

You will see the terms objectives and aims used interchangeably within journal articles and research studies.

Example from the article, Advanced practice nursing student knowledge in obesity management: A mixed methods research study (Fruh et. al, 2019):

 

“The [aims] of this study [were] to 1) identify APN students’ comfort and knowledge of providing care to patients with obesity, 2) ascertain student satisfaction with existing education, and 3) obtain curricular suggestions regarding obesity management. Additionally, this study offered opportunities for APN students to describe difficulties as well as positive experiences when managing obesity in the clinical setting,” (Fruh et. al, 2019, p. 60).

 

 

YOUR RESEARCH OBJECTIVES/AIMS:

(Type at least Three Research Objectives/Aims)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. RESEARCH QUESTION:

 

What is the definition of research question?

“It is a concise, interrogative statement that is worded in the present tense and includes one or more of a study’s principal concepts” (Burns & Groves, 2017, p. 101).

The research question typically has three parts which include the: 1) questioning part of the sentence like “what is…”; 2) word that indicates what the researcher wants to know; and 3) naming of the population and variables.

You might have more than one research question for a research study. There might be a primary research question followed by sub-research questions. Researchers organize their research questions in various ways.

Example from the article, Advanced practice nursing student knowledge in obesity management: A mixed methods research study (Fruh et al., 2019):

 

“The following research questions guided this study: 1) Are APN students comfortable with the overall management of patients with obesity? 2) Based on national guidelines, at which numeric BMI level would a healthcare provider initiate therapy with anti-obesity medications? 3) Does the BMI of the APN student influence the level of comfort addressing obesity-management issues with his/her patients? 4) How thoroughly did the APN students feel they had been prepared to provide obesity management during their graduate nursing education?” (Fruh et al., 2019, p. 60).

 

 

YOUR RESEARCH QUESTION:

(Type One or Two Research Questions)

 

 

 

 

 

 

6. RESEARCH QUESTION:

What is the definition of research hypothesis?

“It is a stated relationship between or among variables within a specified population”(Burns & Groves, 2017, p. 111).

The relationships described in the hypothesis are your research variables. These are directly related to your research population that is identified in the research purpose.

It is common to have more than one hypothesis depending on how many variables and research questions are in your study.

Unfortunately, the authors of this article did not explicitly state their hypotheses. This is not unusual within a journal article, though, it is good practice to include them. It can be inferred from the review of the literature within the background of this paper that researchers anticipated overall low ratings of confidence in obesity management, with a further decrease in confidence for clinicians with higher body mass indexes (BMIs). These relationships are based on the findings from other studies that the authors discuss in this paper.

If the authors were to list a hypothesis for the Fruh et. al (2019) study, they might write the following: ‘…we hypothesize that clinicians with BMIs that are overweight or obese will have lower levels of confidence in management of obesity compared to clinicians with a healthy BMI.’

 

YOUR RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS:

Type Your Hypothesis (ONE OR TWO) For Each of Your Research Questions)