Nursing: NURS 3044: Research methodologies

NURS 3044: Research Methodologies

This assignment help is designed to assist you with your  Assignment 2 Part 2:
Reflective piece and to find peer-reviewed and scholarly sources of literature.

image of information icon   For full assessment details, please see your course outline

Understand your task

Begin by clarifying the assessment requirements. Read the assignment instructions and marking criteria supplied on your course site. The video below explains more about writing assignments at uni.

If you need to develop a research topic/question, visit the Formulate a Question tab on this guide to learn how.

  • Doing an assignment isn't a linear process.
  • Start by reading the task in detail, so you know what you need to do.
  • The assignment instructions and feedback sheet will explain the structure of your assignment.
  • You can find out more about different assignment types on the Study Help website.
  • You might need to revise your assignment plan as you go - this might happen a few times before you write your final draft!
  • As you read more, your argument should evolve to incorporate new information.
  • Make sure you use reliable resources to support your argument.
  • To interpret your task you will need to identify the content words and phrases - these show what you have to focus on.
  • The instruction words tell you how to approach the content, for example, describing something is different to comparing.
  • Identify the limits of your assignment by looking at keywords, word limits and other instructions.
  • Start the process early to get ahead.

Plan your search

  • Searching for your whole assignment is not very effective
  • Mapping out your search is a good place to start
  • Identify the key concepts in your question or topic
  • You don't need to search for task words
  • Use double quotation marks (" ") to search for two or more words together as a phrase
  • Think about what other words (synonyms and alternative terms) might be used to describe the key concepts
  • You can use acronyms, but you should search for the full terms as well
  • To find fewer results, add different concepts using AND (e.g. rural AND Australia)
  • To find more results, add synonyms or alternative terms, to your search using OR (e.g. "renewable energy" OR solar OR wind)
  • You can change your search as you find more information
  • For more information, read the How to plan your search document

Apply the PICO Framework

It is best practice to identify concepts and keywords from your assignment topic prior to searching.

Use the PICO or PIO framework to break down your concepts into more precise groups by identifying your Population of Interest; Intervention; Comparison; and Outcomes. If you have not specified a Comparison, just leave it out- this is a PIO framework.

Lets use the PICO or PIO framework to break down this example question:

Are there any evidence of adverse effects following the administration of the influenza vaccinations to healthcare workers?

P    (Population) Healthcare workers                              
I     (Intervention) Influenza vaccines
C    (Comparison) No comparator
O    (Outcomes) Adverse effects    

Concepts with Synonyms:

  • healthcare workers
  • healthcare professional
  • health personnel
  • Influenza vaccine
  • flu vaccine
  • influenza immunization
  • flu immunization
  • No comparator
  • Adverse effects
  • negative impact
  • side effects
  • negative outcome

Combined search string with:
AND / OR / truncation * / phrases ("word + word")

"healthcare worker*" OR "healthcare professional*" OR "health personnel"
"influenza vaccin*" OR  "flu vaccin*" (* also for vaccinations) OR immuni* OR "influenza immuni*"
"adverse effect*" OR "negative impact*" OR "side effect*" OR "negative outcome*"  


Search the Library Catalogue

The Library Catalogue can be a useful starting point in locating quality information.

Use the Library Catalogue to find:

  • books or ebooks
  • journals or journal articles
  • conference papers and newspaper articles

Learn to use the Library catalogue by working through the interactive tutorial below.

Search in databases

Journal articles are often found in databases.

Useful databases to search:

Search Emcare Tutorial 

Database limits and filters

Database limits and filters may be applied to reduce your search results if you have too many.  Some useful limits include 'English Language' or date. Note the following about using limits:

  • Using a limit only applies to the database you are currently searching. If you have selected more than one, only the results from the filtered database will display.

  • If the database is bibliographic (abstract) only – it won’t find any full-text. Using a full text limiter will therefore yield 0 results.

If you limit your results, there is always the potential that you could miss some important/useful research. 

Select appropriate references

You should critically evaluate all resources found to determine their appropriateness for your assignment. The video below explains more.

  • Having access to a lot of information can be overwhelming.
  • Evaluating information helps you decide what resources you should use.
  • One technique you can use is the CRAAP test.
  • Currency: How recent is the information? Does it suit your needs?
  • Relevance: Is the information relevant to your assignment?
  • Authority: Who wrote the information? Are they an expert?
  • Accuracy: Is the information accurate? Is it supported by evidence?
  • Purpose: Why was the resource created? Is there any bias?
  • You can use the CRAAP tool to think about these issues when evaluate your resources.

Write your assignment

The Student Engagement Unit has created a suite of resources called Study Help that can help you understand different assignment types. 

Have a look at:

Correctly reference your sources

Referencing roadmap banner. Navigate to the referencing roadmap resource.

You must appropriately cite (‘acknowledge’) all references used in your assignment to avoid plagiarism.

Useful resources

If you need help, just ask!

Navigate to the Ask the Library webpage. Navigate to the UniSA study help pals webpage. Navigate to the Studiosity webpage. Navigate to the Learning Advisors' webpage.
Contact: Ask the Library Ask: the Study Help PALs Use: Studiosity Talk to: Learning Adviser