Discuss Where You Will Look For Evidence To Answer Your Research Question

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1. State your research question. Include a paragraph explaining why you picked this topic. What interests you about it? How did you refine your original ideas to get where you are? What is your current level of knowledge on the topic? Include any background information or relevant ongoing “conversation” in your field on this subject.

2. Your proposal will be designed to convince readers of the value of your question and research. How will you tailor your argument to appeal to your audience? Your audience can be your reading/writing group (the class), or a hypothetical organization that could fund your research, or a group consisting of other students in your discipline. The goal is to convince your audience of the relevance of your research and the benefits if you answer this question or solve the problem posed in your research.

3. Discuss where you will look for evidence to answer your research question. Discuss the reliability and relevance of any sources with which you are already familiar and plan to use, including those that helped you determine that this is a current issue or problem. Briefly discuss the kinds of sources you intend to use, the types of evidence you are likely to need, and what fields or disciplines you will likely draw information from.

4. Anticipate objections, concerns, and questions your audience might have and how you would handle these objections. Booth’s Chapters 8 and 9 will be helpful as you compose this. Acknowledge the complexity of your proposed research, and re-emphasize its importance without overstatement or repetition. Indicate your awareness of feasibility issues and concerns, possible research/information limits, and aspects of the problem that you won’t cover or that may remain unresolved after your research. Remind the reader of the importance, relevance, and benefits of your project (despite the complications acknowledged). Be succinct and don’t unnecessarily repeat information already provided.

5. Attach an annotated bibliography (MLA or APA format) of eight good, credible sources on your topic. Summarize and evaluate each source. Use a variety of source types (e.g. books, journal articles, newspaper articles, magazine articles, dissertations, conference proceedings.) At least two of the eight sources should provide counter-arguments and/or explore nuances of the issue that complicate and challenge your position.
Annotating sources with three bullets:

• The first bullet should provide a summary of the source, including its thesis and purpose, and reflects on why it’s a likely source for your research project and how you might use it.
• The second bullet indicates the source type (book, academic journal, trade journal, newspaper, website, personal interview, etc.) and assesses or evaluates the source.
• The third bullet clearly maps and discusses your process for obtaining the source (search term used, how you refined those terms and why, what you were looking for during this search, etc.) and how/whether it led you to additional sources or spurred other searches.

Sample Annotation:

1. Andrews, Calvin, Devin Kite-Powell & Justin V. Hickey. “The Neuroscience ICU Nurse’s Perceptions About End-of-Life Care.” Journal of Neuroscience Nursing, 39.3 (2007): 143-150. ProQuest Nursing & Allied Health Source. 16 Feb. 2009. Web.
The above citation should be INDENTED in lines 2, 3, and 4.

• This article is an analysis of a qualitative research study collecting and analyzing interview data of twelve neuroscience ICU nurses. These nurses were asked to discuss their roles in end of life care and decision-making. Many nurses felt that they provided guidance to patients’ families by asking them what their thoughts were and steering them towards a reasonable decision. Nurses also described themselves as a middle-man in between physicians and families where they communicated and translated between them. The article concludes that though a nurse’s role in communication is difficult, it is indispensable in end of life decisions and not usually offered by other members of the health care team. This article will be helpful in understanding the actual experience of ICU nurses who care for patients and interact with doctors in end of life care. It supports my working thesis expressing the need for greater communication and collaboration between nurses and doctors in end of life care and provides groundwork for how a nurse’s involvement with patients and families qualifies them to assist in making decisions.

• Scholarly Journal Article. This is a highly credible source. It comes from a peer-reviewed journal published by the American Association of Neuroscience Nurses, and Calvin Andrews—a PhD nurse—has several articles published on end-of-life care.

• I searched in the ProQuest Nursing and Allied Health Source. I first started searching for (Nurs*) AND (end of life decisions) AND (role) and no results were returned. I looked at the suggested topics and found “death and dying” to be better search terms than “end of life”. Three documents resulted from my next search: (death decisions) AND (nurs*) AND (doctor*). I then used this search combination to expand my search: (((LSU({PHYSICIANS}) OR LSU({DOCTORS})) AND LSU({DEATH & DYING}))) AND (nurs*). This article resulted from the search combination: (Nurs*) AND (Physician*) OR (doctor*) AND (decision*) AND (death) AND (role*). A manageable twenty results were generated. During this search I was looking for specific articles concerning how nurses and doctors interact in making end of life decisions.