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Gepubliceerd in: Quality of Life Research 10/2022

21-03-2022 | Special Section: Reducing Research Waste in (Health-Related) Quality of Life Research

Reducing research wastage by starting off on the right foot: optimally framing the research question

Auteurs: Nancy E. Mayo, Nikki Ow, Miho Asano, Sorayya Askari, Ruth Barclay, Sabrina Figueiredo, Melanie Hawkins, Stanley Hum, Mehmet Inceer, Navaldeep Kaur, Ayse Kuspinar, Kedar K. V. Mate, Ana Maria Moga, Maryam Mozafarinia

Gepubliceerd in: Quality of Life Research | Uitgave 10/2022

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Abstract

Purpose

Strongly framed research questions are clear as to the population (P), the exposures or interventions (E/I), comparison groups (C), outcomes (O), time when relevant (T), and what the investigator wants to know. A solid framework sets up the measurement model, analysis, and anticipated results. The purpose of this study was to estimate the extent to which research questions in journals that focused on patient-reported outcome measures (PROM) and quality of life (QOL) are clear.

Methods

All 440 research articles published in four PROM journals in 2020. excluding reviews, psychometric, and qualitative papers, were reviewed. Research questions were classified as: (i) adequately framed (ii) poorly framed; or (iii) unframed based on clarity criteria. Examples from each journal were presented and reframed to match results in the article.

Results

Of 440 articles, 195 (44.3%) were classified as adequately framed; 230 (52.2%) as poorly framed; and 15 (3.4%) as unframed. There was heterogeneity across journals (Chi-square: 20.8; 6 df; p = 0.002). Only 29% were framed according to what the investigators wanted to know; 72% were framed like a “to do” list; and 6% were framed as a research agenda.

Conclusion

Almost half of the questions were poorly framed or unframed a practice that could contribute to research wastage. Even “adequately framed” questions rarely stated what they wanted to know a priori, increasing the risk of biased reporting. Researchers, reviewers, and editors should encourage the use established frameworks for research questions.
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Metagegevens
Titel
Reducing research wastage by starting off on the right foot: optimally framing the research question
Auteurs
Nancy E. Mayo
Nikki Ow
Miho Asano
Sorayya Askari
Ruth Barclay
Sabrina Figueiredo
Melanie Hawkins
Stanley Hum
Mehmet Inceer
Navaldeep Kaur
Ayse Kuspinar
Kedar K. V. Mate
Ana Maria Moga
Maryam Mozafarinia
Publicatiedatum
21-03-2022
Uitgeverij
Springer International Publishing
Gepubliceerd in
Quality of Life Research / Uitgave 10/2022
Print ISSN: 0962-9343
Elektronisch ISSN: 1573-2649
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s11136-022-03117-y

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