Critical Appraisal in Adult Nursing: Mastering the Art of Research Essay Question

Undertake a systematic critique of one research paper from a choice of two, critically discussing how this research paper fits with the current evidence base, using the appraising tools provided.

Research Methods


To undertake a systematic critique of a research paper:

"Black students' experiences of “acceptable” racism at a UK university - Osbourne, L., Barnett, J., and Blackwood, L., 2022. Journal of Community & Applied Social Psychology."

Assessing Learning Outcomes and Expectations

  1. A critical appraisal of a published research article relevant to the Adult Nursing practice.
  2. Use the specified critiquing tool.
  3. Include a discussion of the relevance of this research to clinical practice.
  4. The breadth and depth of application of the critiquing tool on the chosen research article, and the detailed discussion of the relevance of this chosen research article in clinical practice will assist in further understanding.


Critiquing framework

The use of one of the critiquing frameworks below is compulsory:

For quantitative research: How to appraise quantitative research

Xabi Cathala Calvin Moorley

For qualitative research: How to appraise qualitative research

Calvin Moorley Xabi Cathala

Qualitative Research Paper: Osbourne, L., Barnett, J. and Blackwood, L., 2022. Black students' experiences of “acceptable” racism at a UK university. Journal of Community & Applied Social Psychology. Quantitative

Research Paper: Aiken, L.H., Sloane, D.M., Ball, J., Bruyneel, L., Rafferty, A.M. and Griffiths, P., 2021. Patient satisfaction with hospital care and nurses in England: an observational study. BMJ open, 8(1), p.e019189.

Essay Structure

Clear Introduction

o Provide a clear statement of intent and signpost the essay.

o Tell the reader what will be included in this essay and in what order. o State why the topic is important to your field of nursing.

o Outline the importance of research in nursing, critiquing research and link to evidence-based practice.

o Define key terms which are relevant to your essay – ensure the definitions are relevant to your essay content (e.g., if using quantitative research, ensure your definition relates to the type of studies and methodology you are discussing).

Main Body

o Critique the research paper using the framework provided by the module leader (see below) identifying strengths and limitations of the study in relation to believability and robustness:


o Writing style, author credentials, title, abstract


o Research problem/purpose significance of study

o Literature review o Study design/methods/philosophical underpinnings/theoretical framework/ aim/hypothesis o Sampling

o Ethical considerations

o Data collection o Data analysis

o Findings

In doing this you will be showing an understanding of the research process.


• Make sure that you support your discussion with relevant and latest references, identifying any implications of the issues identified.

 • Demonstrate that you have conducted an appropriate inspection of the literature related to this topic

• Summarise the significant findings, showing where this study fits in to the wider

Evidence-base on the topic. This will help you to demonstrate wider reading and should show that you have undertaken an inspection of the relevant literature.


• Conclude your essay by summarising what you have discussed throughout this essay in a logical order.

Do not just repeat your introduction. Start this by giving an overall summary – what have you done – what have you shown, how is this relevant to current practice, where does this need to go from here?

Related Blogs:

  1. Sample Paper - Title: "Black Students' Experiences of Racism at a UK University: A Qualitative Analysis
  2. "Developing Critical Appraisal Skills in Nursing: A Comprehensive Guide"

  3. "Evaluating Quantitative Research in Nursing: Key Concepts and Strategies"
  4. "Understanding Qualitative Research in Nursing: Methods and Analysis"
  5. "Evidence-Based Practice in Adult Nursing: The Importance of Critical Appraisal"


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