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Aspects of Nursing Research


Research papers are complex scientific works that require intense mental labor at all stages in order to produce meaningful results. Early planning stage at which a researcher decides what he or she will work on sets the tone for the consequent paper and has to be carefully considered from all possible angles. The researchers often formulate a problem and proceed with explaining it using a self-produced theory or ones existing in the scientific literature. Such an approach contains certain bias and negative side-effects which will be discussed here.

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Disadvantages of Proposing a Research Problem and Seeking Theory for It

There are several disadvantages of searching theory in support of a certain research problem identified by the author. One of them is the fact that such an approach creates a confirmation bias. In this scenario, a researcher who produced a certain statement or a problem obviously needs to find a solution for it and will apply anything that can even partly assist him or her in this endeavor. Researchers may become determined to produce a positive result, which may undermine the quality of the procedures and lead to even further biases.

In addition to that, there can be a plethora of factors many of which cannot be controlled. It is often the case when the research problem is defined overly broadly, and there is a multitude of factors that arise during the implementation phase. Certain variables may remain hidden until the very last moment. In the explorative experimental research, this consideration is of utmost significance. Furthermore, the paradigm of problem statement-description-hypothesis can also lead to a wrong cause-effect relationship. Researchers who use such a method can be prone to seek a relationship between variables where it cannot exist or use overreaching evidence to support a correlation between them. In such circumstances, the conclusion and implications of the final paper might be incorrect. A researcher might also encounter a time problem and might be unable to study the subject properly due to the wide scope or other issues.

Methods to Address Possible Problems

According to Polit and Beck (2016), there is a need for a data-driven approach to identifying a proper research problem. A researcher may uncover a problem in his or her professional practice environment, which imbues him or her with the knowledge of possible factors that influence it. The latter can help clearly state independent and dependent variables and narrow down the list of possible impacting factors. Prior to stating the identified problem officially, it might be of use to discuss it with colleagues and find confirmation in peer-reviewed sources (Polit & Beck, 2016).

It can also be of essence not to make overreaching conclusions from identifying patterns and correlations. It is often the case that there is a need for further research into all possible factor correlation before cause-effect relationships can be established with a high degree of certainty. In order to address time limitation, the researcher needs to state realistic goals for the study that he or she will be able to reach within the reasonable timeframe (Polit & Beck, 2016).


All things considered, the problem statement is a significant stage in research planning. Should the problem be stated carelessly, the researcher might face confirmation bias, time insufficiency, incorrect cause-effect relationships, and other issues. Therefore, it is of the essence to carefully plan, discuss, and narrow down the research problem before advancing to a next stage.


Polit, D. F., & Beck, C. T. (2016). Nursing research: Generating and assessing evidence for nursing practice (10th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins.

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"Aspects of Nursing Research." StudyCorgi, 21 Dec. 2021,

1. StudyCorgi. "Aspects of Nursing Research." December 21, 2021.


StudyCorgi. "Aspects of Nursing Research." December 21, 2021.


StudyCorgi. 2021. "Aspects of Nursing Research." December 21, 2021.


StudyCorgi. (2021) 'Aspects of Nursing Research'. 21 December.

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