Practicing Research: Discovering Evidence That Matters / Edition 1

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Practicing Research: Discovering Evidence That Matters provides students, practitioners, and researchers with guidance on best practices. The book’s eight chapters correspond to the skills that research consumers need to discover evidence that matters. Author Arlene Fink pays special attention to facilitating student learning by offeringing over a hundred examples, exercises, tables, figures, and checklists, as well as an extensive glossary. All the examples are taken from existing research and programs and grounded in the practitioner’s reality.

Key Features

  • Provides methods for determining the validity of evidence and how to justify an acceptable level of “proof” based on science, experience, and values
  • Offers practical frameworks to guide the research process and take the student from needs assessment to program implementation and evaluation through to implementation of results
  • Shows how to engage diverse stakeholders (communities, teachers) in the research process
  • Accompanied by a companion Web site at consists of Web exercises for students for each chapter

Intended Audience

This text is intended to be the core text or one of the primary texts for applied research courses at the graduate level in Education, Social Work, Public Administration and Policy, Evaluation, Health, Nursing, and Criminal Justice. Readers should have a passing familiarity with the idea of research, but no special research expertise is necessary.

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Editorial Reviews

NACADA Journal
"Fink excels in [her] introduction to research design and includes a useful discussion on threats to internal and external validity, [...] a particular strength of the work. "— Jason P. Browning
NACADA Journal - Jason P. Browning
"Fink excels in [her] introduction to research design and includes a useful discussion on threats to internal and external validity, [...] a particular strength of the work."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781412937702
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications
  • Publication date: 12/14/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 400
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.82 (d)

Meet the Author

Arlene Fink (PhD) is a professor of medicine and public health at the University of California, Los Angeles, and president of the Langley Research Institute. Her main interests include evaluation and survey research, conducting research literature reviews, and the evaluation of their quality. Dr. Fink has conducted scores of evaluation studies in public health, medicine, and education. She is on the faculty of UCLA’s Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program and is a scientific and evaluation advisor to UCLA’s Gambling Studies and IMPACT (Improving Access, Counseling & Treatment for Californians with Prostate Cancer) programs. She consults nationally and internationally for agencies such as L’Institut de Promotion de la Prévention Secondaire en Addictologie in Paris, France, and Peninsula Health in Victoria, Australia. Professor Fink has taught and lectured extensively all over the world and is the author of over 135 peer-reviewed articles and 15 textbooks.

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1. The Evaluation Research and Evidence-Based Practice Partnership
Chapter 2. The Research Consumer as Detective: Investigating Program and Bibliographic Data Bases
Chapter 3: The Practical Research Consumer
Chapter 4. The Designing Research Consumer
Chapter 5. The Research Consumer Reviews the Measures
Chapter 6. The Research Consumer Evaluates Measurement Reliability and Validity
Chapter 7. Getting Closer: Grading the Literature and Evaluating the Strength of the Evidence
Chapter 8. The Ethical Research Consumer Assesses Needs and Evaluates Improvement Identifying Needs, Preferences and Values
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