Research Study Designs


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Research Study Designs: 

Research Study Designs Dr. Deryck D. Pattron, Ph.D. Public Health & Safety Consultant


Contents Introduction Case Series Studies Case Control Studies Cohort Studies Randomized Controlled Studies Meta-analysis Systematic Reviews Conclusion References

Introduction : 

Introduction Research designs provide the theoretic framework for logical, systematic, collection, analysis and interpretation of scientific information All scientific studies follow a particular research design The selection of a particular research design is dependent on the objectives of the study and the data to be collected

Case Series Studies: 

Case Series Studies Collection of reports on the treatment of individuals with the same condition or reports on a single patient No control group Lacks statistical validity Easy to understand Completed in a short time period

Case Control Studies: 

Case Control Studies Individuals with a particular condition are compared with people who do not Take histories (study and control group), analyze data and draw conclusions Estimate the odds of developing a condition/disease Can be quickly done Very effective for conditions with rare outcomes

Cohort Studies: 

Cohort Studies Longitudinal studies Observations followed over time and compared Prospective or historical/retrospective Establish causation of a disease Uncertainty of confounding variables Require large sample size Inefficient for rare outcomes Take longer periods to complete

Randomized Controlled Studies: 

Randomized Controlled Studies Two groups Treatment group Control group Patients randomly assigned to groups Gold standards in medical research Ethical concerns Confounding variables


Meta-Analyses Systematic objective way to combine data from many studies Pooled estimate of treatment effectiveness Statistical significance Publication bias Theoretical framework Misleading results

Systematic Reviews: 

Systematic Reviews Comprehensive survey All relevant studies of highest level of evidence Rigorous analysis Systematic review


Conclusion Research designs are used by researchers, scientists and interested persons to direct and conduct logical and systematic research to increase our understanding of the world around us


References Gravetter, F.J., Forzano, L-B. A. 2006. Research Methods for the Behavioural Sciences. California: Wadsworth Cengage Learning McBurney D.H., White T.L. 2007. Research Methods. California: Thomson Higher Education

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