How To Write Evidence-Based Practice Papers in Nursing
Also referred to as EBP, Evidence-based Practice nursing paper comes in various ways that include EBP capstone projects, EBP coursework, EBP case reports, or EBP thesis. Irrespective of the name, without a clear understanding of how to write an evidence-based practice paper, you will not write the best nursing paper.
Often, students are required to write evidence-based papers so that they can develop confidence, critical thinking, research interests, decision-making skills, and creativity that can be applied in the real-world clinical environment. If you are a nursing student, you must write an evidence-based practice paper, and it has to be in the form of change management in which quality enhancement processes are commended.
As such, to avoid making mistakes when writing your evidence-based practice paper, it is important to have the entire writing process at your fingertips. Unlike the other nursing papers and assignments, an evidence-based practice paper needs in-depth research, reasoning, and reading. And without a doubt, writing the best evidence-based practice paper is challenging and requires time, effort, and commitment.
For this reason, we gathered guidelines for writing evidence-based practice nursing paper to lessen the burden of writing your papers. But, should you find it difficult to get around it even after reading this post, we have a team of experienced nursing paper writers who can come in handy to help you. Without much ado, let’s get started!
What is an Evidence-based Practice Nursing Paper?
An evidence-based practice nursing mainly focuses on the concept that medical practice should be based on adapting and developing principles through a cycle of evidence, research, and analysis of theory. Therefore, an evidence-based practice nursing intends to address the changes in practice based on the nursing and non-nursing theories developed through thorough research and studies.
The implementation of evidence-based practice can be in a form of systematic review; in this case, research is reviewed based on a particular guideline to determine its suitability for being used as a standard in practice. The systematic review is aimed at sense-making from the huge information available for effective change management, execution, and institutionalization.
The Six Significant Steps Involved in Writing Evidence-based Practice Nursing Paper
1. Assessment of the need for change
This step involves the creation of a research question or hypothesis based on the needs or gaps in the current practice.
2. Location of the best evidence
Concerning the levels of nursing resources or evidence, this step involves evaluating the credibility, relevance, and reliability of the evidence or peer-reviewed articles or resources available.
3. Synthesis of evidence
Synthesis of evidence entails comparison and contrast of available sources of evidence to determine the similarities and differences to identify the best course of approach.
4. Designing change
The outcome of the synthesis of the available evidence will guide the process of creating an effective change based on the evidence gathered. Besides, designing change entails drafting the change implementation plan within a clinical setup.
5. Implementing and Evaluating Change
After the design, the next step is to initiate the change procedures through advocates like the nurse leaders and nurses themselves. Essentially, this is the stage where the new concept is put into practice. Different change management theories are followed to make sure the process is a success in the change management plan. Also, the evaluation of the change is done at this phase to determine its suitability.
6. Integration and sustaining change
After the new evidence has been used to execute the change, it is adopted through policy and guidelines within the clinical environment. The evidence is, however, involved in a continuous process of improvement to make it better.
Steps to Writing an Evidence-Based Paper in Nursing
When you are assigned to write an evidence-based nursing paper, you need to follow certain steps and guidelines to write an exceptional EBP paper that can be graded. But what are these steps and guidelines? Read through to find out!
1. Pick a viable topic for your paper
You can employ different methods when it comes to choosing your Evidence-based practice nursing topic. For instance, you can derive your EBP topic from your peer-reviewed sources, coursework, class assignments, as well as past evidence-based projects written. Moreover, the internet can provide you with a variety of evidence-based practice topic ideas in nursing. All you need to do is to sieve through the various ideas and choose one that resonates with your passion and interest in nursing practice.
For example, if you intend to improve patient flow in the ED with the help of technology, you can be sure to familiarize yourself with technology such as HER or HIT. Therefore, start by exploring your course notes, assignments, and past evidence-based papers before you pick your tentative topic.
2. Consult With your Instructor or Professor
Nursing education, just like nursing practice, calls for collaboration and getting feedback. As such, once you have chosen your creative, evidence-based practice topic, make an appointment with your professor or instructor for confirmation of your topic. Moreover, your professor or instructor may request an evidence-based nursing practice proposal before you proceed to write the entire paper.
In the proposal, highlight the nursing issue you intend to solve, the change management process, and the basis for the change. This way, the professor will guide you on what to discard or improve on when writing your evidence-based practice nursing paper. If it is not convincing enough, you may be required to revise your entire EBP nursing proposal.
To have a great EBP nursing paper topic, choose a good health indicator such as health conditions, disease, or working/living conditions. You can then describe your target population or sub-population, find evidence of about 7 to 10 peer-reviewed sources that back your proposal. Equally, describe the projected outcomes and rationale of the change anticipated in the clinical setting.
The other health indicators you can use for your evidence-based practice nursing paper include socio-economic status, education, employment, gender, environment, culture, genetic endowment, healthcare services, access, quality, cost of care, coping skills, and social support, among others.
Additionally, your evidence-based practice nursing paper can include a change model, nursing theory, nursing interventions, and population health model that each must be justified using credible evidence.
3. Gather Supporting Evidence – Research
Without a doubt, the evidence is the backbone of any evidence-based paper. As such, you need to do thorough research for both print sources and online to get enough facts to support your EBP nursing paper thesis statement. After you have developed the problem statement and outlined your thesis statement, you can then critically evaluate all the sources you have to determine those that are reliable and can support the thesis.
If your professor asks you to write an annotated bibliography or do a critical analysis of each of the resources or the primary resource that supports your evidence-based practice paper. When it comes to selecting your sources, bear in mind that there are primary and secondary sources. All the sources can be gotten from databases like EBSCO, PubMed, TRIP Database, OVID, CINAHL, and The Cochrane Collaboration, among others. Other dependable sources include .gov, .rgo, and Edu websites that provide authentic information on various disciplines.
Professional and government organizations and NGOs offer a good starting point for doing research. Often these places are excellent sources of statistics, epidemiology data, and further information. To do excellent research, you need to support the research question, hypothesis, and thesis statement.
4. Deciding on the Best Resources for EBP Papers
Like we mentioned earlier, there are primary and secondary sources of data when it comes to scientific writing. Instead of gathering and analyzing real data as you do for qualitative and quantitative or mixed methods thesis, research papers, dissertations, and evidence-based practice paper are based on publishing findings from primary research.
As such, it is imperative as a student to use credible, reliable, and verifiable sources. Do you know how to select good sources for your EBP nursing paper? Well, check out the three criteria below!
Research is reliable such as one that is published in a reliable database journal and is peer-reviewed. Besides, a reliable EBP depends on the level of evidence provided. Will the same test yield similar results if replicated?
A valid research study is one that is followed by strict research protocols, up to date, and relevant to the selected EBP paper topic chosen. Does the research measure what it says it intends to measure?
Credible research that can be incorporated into an EBP paper must have verifiable findings, published in a reputable journal, and is scholarly. Is the research study from a reputable journal?
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5. Evidence-Based Practice Paper Outline
A great evidence-based practice paper in nursing must have several sections, each of which is complete with accuracy, care, and intelligence. In this section, we take you through the various parts that should include in an evidence-based practice nursing paper.
6. Coming up with a Good Title
A great title for your EBP paper will either attract and keep or turn off your audience or professor. As such, having a good title for your EBP paper, report, research paper, or case study is essential. The title sets the scope of the whole EBP paper while providing a hint on what the thesis statement is. As such, it must be precise, clear, and fine-tuned.
You can write your title in form of a question, paraphrase the PICOT statement, statement, or a fact opposing the status quo. Regardless of the direction, you decide to take, the main aim remains constant, which is to give the reader some insight from the onset.
7. Thesis Statement
While the PICOT statement can briefly tell what your entire evidence-based practice nursing paper is about, you still need to come up with a strong thesis statement. A great thesis statement, which often comes in the last sentence or two in the introduction, is like the blueprint of the entire EBP paper. The thesis statement is the foundation on which the whole paper and its arguments are built.
However, you must draw a line between a thesis statement and hypothesis, which is an idea that you either intend to prove or disprove based on a set of presented evidence. Therefore, an evidence-based practice nursing paper with a thesis statement receives the best grade without leaving your instructor reading through the paper.
Your thesis statement must be specific, precise, manageable, and appealing. An example of an evidence-based practice thesis can be: “Novel approaches to pain management dictate that a nurse must obtain three kinds of knowledge to respond effectively to patient’s pain: Knowledge of self, knowledge of standards of care, and knowledge of pain.”
Also, your thesis can be an implied argument, which makes it descriptive. Nonetheless, most professors and instructors don’t like such. For example, “This paper discusses…”
The introduction of your evidence-based practice must reflect definite elements. First, you ought to present a background to the research problem or the nursing issue you intend to solve. It would be helpful if you paint a clear picture of the problem, all through and briefly the problem statement. Equally, you can provide a rationale for the problem statement. More importantly, you can organize your introduction into a PICO:
- Problem: What problem does the patient population or group have? What is there to be solved?
- Intervention: What interventions are considered or evaluated? You can cite appropriate literature.
- Comparison: What other interventions are there to consider? Cite the appropriate literature.
- Outcome: What is the projected outcome of the research question?
The thesis statement approach mentioned above comes as either a sentence or two in the last part of the introduction. The research problem should help develop the research question or hypothesis for your evidence-based practice paper.
An evidenced-based practice paper doesn’t focus on research; instead, it focuses on the evidence. As such, when writing your EBP nursing paper, you can only collect data from literature produced on your selected topic. However, you may get confused about what level of evidence to use when researching.
For this reason, there are systematic reviews, white papers, practice papers, peer-reviewed journals, opinion papers, case-controlled studies, RCTs, cohort studies, critically appraised topics, and more. Decide on which level of evidence is appropriate, and this trickles down to the reliability, validity, and credibility of your scholarly source.
Your evidence-based practicing nursing paper should include the following:
- The databases searched, search terms, total articles yielded per search, the inclusion and selection criteria, and the exclusion criteria.
- Indicate the inclusion and exclusion criteria for the articles and the number of articles you will end up with.
Additionally, you can choose to use knowledge as evidence-based on authority, theory, a priori, and tenacity as guided in the Evaluating research for evidence-based nursing practice by Fawcett and Garity.
10. Evidence-Based Literature Review
In this section, you are to explore the connection of the evidence you collect to your topic. You can either find the gap in the studies or use the information to build on your EBP topic. For instance, if you intend to come up with a new management strategy for pressure ulcers in palliative care, be sure to select credible evidence for the topic. Try to find the effectiveness of your proposed approach in other settings, what works wells, and what precautions need considering. This section calls for more of comparing and contrasting your sources in a critical way that develops your EBP paper in the best way.
Moreover, you will report your findings from the literature in this section. You can do this by outlining the aspects of each study in a table while including samples, demographics, level of evidence, outcome, and limitations of your research.
Like in any other professional research setting, the discussion section involves discussion of the changed practice, implementation strategy, and assessment of the approaches of implementation.
Equally, you can explore how the findings in the literature review led to the given change in practice, its efficiency and recommend the best approach from the implementation of change. You can make comparisons if necessary.
In this section, conclude your EBP paper by summarizing the findings and leave your readers contented. Revamp your thesis statement without adding any new information or reference. Make your conclusion be at least 10% of the total word count, precise, clear, and with finality.
References are the surest indication of your research, and they are even helpful when you link them with the information you provide. This way, you will not only be proving your hypothesis but making your EBP paper original and authentic. However, you must get creative when it comes to borrowing ideas and make sure you give the credit they merit. That way, you put your best foot forward as far as evidence-based practice nursing paper is concerned.
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