Searching for good evidence

R21–0857 PHAR30400

For e-learning this embed is the same as last year here https://online.manchester.ac.uk/webapps/blackboard/content/listContent.jsp?course_id=_41902_1&content_id=_12002117_1

with the removal of the video intro and new links to mentis — see below

I have simply included the sections with the new links.

1. What am I searching for?

The first step is preparing to turn your topic or question into a set of terms to search for:

  1. Highlight the key concepts in your topic or research question
  2. Identify synonyms — are there any related concepts or other ways to express the same idea which need considering?
  3. Consider alternative spellings or word endings

Identify the key ideas and ways other people might describe those ideas. You can be general or specific. You could arrange them in a mind map like in the image below.

Mindmap of search terms

Activity:

Let’s take our example below and come up with all of the words and phrases that you can that you could use to search for information to situate your audit.

Patient satisfaction in healthcare: why is it important and how does it relate to patient characteristics?

Add your words and phrases to the Menti below and you should be able to see everyone’s contribution.

(Embed Menti )

<div style=’position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; padding-top: 35px; height: 0; overflow: hidden;’><iframe sandbox=’allow-scripts allow-same-origin allow-presentation’ allowfullscreen=’true’ allowtransparency=’true’ frameborder=’0' height=’315' src=’https://www.mentimeter.com/embed/da905ba21c1921731e1d8df5fd463660/d153d288c0ce' style=’position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%;’ width=’420'></iframe></div>

This step is important as it provides you with a time saves a place to return to should your search not return the results that you require. More on this later.

The traffic lights strategy

Once you have a broad range of search terms then you can begin to narrow them down. You can do this by applying the traffic lights strategy

Consider the terms:

  1. Green — you MUST have — these terms cannot be compromised and are integral to your research
  2. Amber — you would CONSIDER — these terms are negotiable and are more flexible. Sometimes these may include related terms to the core terms that you cannot compromise with
  3. Red — you DO NOT want — these terms are not required for your research and could detract from the focus of your research. If these terms begin to appear in your search results you may choose to EXCLUDE these

Look at the word cloud that you have created and then list the words that you would capture as Green.

Activity. These questions are valuable as they help you to refine and fine tune your words (embed menti)

<div style=’position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; padding-top: 35px; height: 0; overflow: hidden;’><iframe sandbox=’allow-scripts allow-same-origin allow-presentation’ allowfullscreen=’true’ allowtransparency=’true’ frameborder=’0' height=’315' src=’https://www.mentimeter.com/embed/da905ba21c1921731e1d8df5fd463660/d153d288c0ce' style=’position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%;’ width=’420'></iframe></div>

  • Why is it important to search for the relationship between patient satisfaction and patient outcomes (e.g. adherence to treatment/meds; health outcomes; service use outcomes (e.g. hospital admissions)?
  • What search terms relate to patient characteristics: esp. age, gender, ethnicity?
  • What terms represent patient satisfaction e.g. patient experience, customer satisfaction?

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