Introduction to Research: Understanding and Applying Multiple Strategies

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INTRODUCTION TO RESEARCH provides the reader with a foundation from which to critique and understand research designs and their applications to healthcare and human service settings. It is divided into four parts: Introduction, Thinking Processes, Design Approaches, and Action Processes. The text reflects a new school of thought that recognizes and values multiple research strategies. This perspective proposes that naturalistic and experimental-type research strategies have equal value and contribute in complementary and distinct ways to a science of practice. Knowledge of these different research traditions presents new opportunities for addressing the complex health-related research questions that are emerging in today's health and human service environments.

  • Includes a well-balanced, detailed discussion of both qualitative and quantitative methodologies, which provides a comprehensive and equal focus.
  • Features significantly expanded discussions on specific design strategies to facilitate the reader's ability to compare, contrast and integrate these strategies.
  • Contains a new chapter organization for a more logical flow of content, which is divided into four parts: Introduction, Thinking Processes, Design Approaches and Action Processes.
  • Provides expanded use of research examples, making the book more appropriate for a variety of healthcare and human service disciplines.
  • Features a conceptual framework in which a graphic appears throughout the text to highlight and integrate the two research traditions from a process perspective. The concept emphasizes that each research tradition must address 10 essential thinking and action processes. These processes are thought about and solved differently, depending upon the particular research methodology being pursued. It brings clarity and understandability to the material and ties the book together.
  • Contains an expanded, comprehensive glossary to aid student understanding of a sometimes challenging subject.
  • Includes case studies and field stories to provide real-life "snapshots" of what it is like to participate in different types of research processes.
  • Includes key terms, chapter outlines and hands-on learning exercises in each chapter.
  • Appropriate for occupational therapy, chiropractic, physical therapy, speech pathology, nursing, social work and other healthcare and human service professions.
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    PARTI Introduction
    Essentials of research
    Thinking processes

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    About the author (1998)

    Dr. DePoy teaches courses in research, evaluation, grant writing and disability studies. Her scholarship embraces health and disability, issues of aging, research methodology, and evaluation practice. She is a member of more than a dozen professional associations, societies and task forces at state, national and international levels and serves as Commissioner on the Commission on Disability and Persons with Disabilities of the Council on Social Work Education. Along with this book, Dr. DePoy is co-author of another Brooks/Cole text, EVALUATION PRACTICE: THINKING AND ACTION PRINCIPLES FOR SOCIAL WORK PRACTICE, 2003.

    Laura N. Gitlin, PhD, is Professor in the Department of Occupational Therapy and founding Director of the Community and Homecare Research Division (CHORD) at Jefferson College of Health Professions, Thomas Jefferson University. CHORD's mission is to develop and test innovative behavioral and environmental approaches to helping older people with physical frailty remain at home, supporting family caregivers, and enhancing life quality of persons with dementia. Dr. Gitlin is a nationally and internationally recognized and well funded researcher, having received research and training grants from both federal agencies and private foundations, including the Alzheimer's Association and the National Institutes of Health. She currently has over $6 million of committed research grant monies and has helped garner close to $20 million in grant funding over the past 20 years. As part of a current Geriatric Leadership Award funded by the National Institute on Aging, she is establishing an infrastructure for funded aging research at Thomas Jefferson University. Dr. Gitlin has also served as a grant reviewer for the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research, the Alzheimer's Association, the National Institute on Aging, the Agency for Health Research and Quality, and the American Occupational Therapy Foundation. She has published extensively in peer-reviewed journals, is a co-author of a research text on quantitative and qualitative research methodologies, and has two books forthcoming.

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