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“I’ve an idea!”: Developing a credible research question in simulation-based education and practice

Prof Gerard Gormley, Dr Andrew Spence

 “I’ve an idea!”: Developing a credible research question in simulation-based education and practice

Have you ever had an idea that you want to research...? Of course you have! In this workshop we will guide you in the incubation of your idea(s). It will help you in framing and reframing these ideas into research questions (Just a heads up that it can take weeks (and sometimes longer) to settle on that credible research question so what we'll offer are approaches to getting to that point). Best practice in simulation based education is dynamic. As modern healthcare develops, so should our educational methods also develop to best prepare our healthcare professionals for clinical practice. As an educational community, there is an imperative for us to conduct research that generates new knowledge that best guides our simulation practice. As with all forms of research, developing a well-defined research question is of critical importance to the foundation of any study. In this workshop, we will support participants in developing a credible research question and signpost on the next steps in performing a study. Ideally, participants should come to the session with ideas for research.

Participants will be able to:

  1. Describe important steps of developing a research aim and question - including
  2. Respond to the following questions about their research idea
    1. What is important about this topic? Why is it of interest?
    2. What exactly is the problem that needs to be addressed? What is problematic about it?
    3. What is and is not known about your topic under investigation?
    4. What questions you would like to answer? What objectives would you like to achieve?
    5. Who would you like to benefit from your research?
  3. Signpost the next stage of carrying out a qualitative research project

General introductions, “ground rules” and overview of session

Introduction to qualitative research including ontological and epistemological positions

Buzz group activity regarding participants “research ideas”

Interactive work on: Problematization, Gap analysis, Research question development and refinement

“Dragons’ Dens” presentation and “pitch” of research idea

Conclusion. Participants will complete “postcard reminders” where they will write down their “research questions” and dates they would like to initiate their plans.

A range of educational techniques will be used in this session including:

  • Buzz groups “Sandpit” activities

Health profession researchers and educators who are keen to develop a qualitative research project.