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Session: 2022/23

Last modified: 07/07/2022 13:38:55

Title of Module: NMC Critical Research Appraisal

Code: NURS09223 SCQF Level: 9
(Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework)
Credit Points: 20 ECTS: 10
(European Credit Transfer Scheme)
School:School of Health and Life Sciences
Module Co-ordinator:Elaine  Stevens

Summary of Module

Having the ability to critically review research evidence to determine its credibility and provenance is a core graduate attribute. In addition health and social care professionals regardless of their geographical location or place of practice are required to provide culturally sensitive, evidence based care. As such individual professionals across the world should be able to discuss the availability of new research evidence to their work colleagues and others in order to ensure the right care is given to the right patient as the right time.

This module aims to develop knowledgeable and research-minded graduates who have an in-depth understanding of the research process and are analytical and inquiring and able to think critically. The module also equips students with the ability to make use of the best evidence within their practice and/or improve care throughout their working lives. This will enable students to work toward the UWS graduate attributes of being universal, work-ready and successful. This module also leads students into their honours award by providing them with the knowledge and skills to successfully complete their dissertation.

This is a theory based module and as such there is no requirement for a workplace supervisor.

This module is core module at level 9 for the Graduate Diploma in Occuational Health Nursing

The module is suitable occcupational health students and aims to promote global citizenship and graduateness for all students regardless of geography or employment status.

Module Delivery Method
Face-To-FaceBlendedFully OnlineHybridCHybridOWork-based Learning
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Term used to describe the traditional classroom environment where the students and the lecturer meet synchronously in the same room for the whole provision.

A mode of delivery of a module or a programme that involves online and face-to-face delivery of learning, teaching and assessment activities, student support and feedback. A programme may be considered “blended” if it includes a combination of face-to-face, online and blended modules. If an online programme has any compulsory face-to-face and campus elements it must be described as blended with clearly articulated delivery information to manage student expectations

Fully Online
Instruction that is solely delivered by web-based or internet-based technologies. This term is used to describe the previously used terms distance learning and e learning.

Online with mandatory face-to-face learning on Campus

Online with optional face-to-face learning on Campus

Work-based Learning
Learning activities where the main location for the learning experience is in the workplace.

Campus(es) for Module Delivery
The module will normally be offered on the following campuses / or by Distance/Online Learning: (Provided viable student numbers permit)
Paisley:Ayr:Dumfries:Lanarkshire:London:Distance/Online Learning:Other:






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Term(s) for Module Delivery
(Provided viable student numbers permit).
Term 1


Term 2check markTerm 3


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Learning Outcomes: (maximum of 5 statements)

On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

L1. Evaluate the main research methods and designs relevant to the wider health and social care and public services research contexts

L2. Critically reflect on the use of online database searching strategies and the implications of the quality and quantity of research retrieved on the specific area of enquiry

L3. Critically appraise published research studies with particular reference to their methodological strengths and limitations and their influence on the evidence base

Employability Skills and Personal Development Planning (PDP) Skills
SCQF Headings During completion of this module, there will be an opportunity to achieve core skills in:
Knowledge and Understanding (K and U) SCQF Level 9.

Understanding the research process and the characteristics of the main research approaches;

Understanding the processes involved in undertaking a literature search.

Practice: Applied Knowledge and Understanding SCQF Level 9.

Using appraisal skills to evaluate research and its potential contribution to evidence based practice;

Using knowledge about the barriers to applying research in practice to assess how these barriers may be overcome.

Generic Cognitive skills SCQF Level 9.

Employing critical analysis skills to appraise studies and the issues involved in applying the findings to practice;

Appraising key elements of research design including concepts of sampling, data collection, data analysis, reliability, validity and ethics.

Communication, ICT and Numeracy Skills SCQF Level 9.

Making effective use of information technology and other sources to retrieve information;

Interpreting and evaluating numerical and graphical data when appraising research literature;

Promote global citizenship to enable the dicussion of best practice in research appraisal.

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with others SCQF Level 9.

Working effectively with other module participants during group or online activities;

Identifying and addressing their own learning needs for future professional practice;

Recognising ethical and professional issues arising from emerging research.

Pre-requisites: Before undertaking this module the student should have undertaken the following:
Module Code:
Module Title:
Co-requisitesModule Code:
Module Title:

* Indicates that module descriptor is not published.

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Learning and Teaching
This module is delivered by full online learning utilising a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE).

Students who are learning fully online and are supported by the VLE will receive: Core quality assured module resources; individual and group tutorial support and directed learning via the VLE system. This will be aided by synchronous online classroom sessions, asynchronous discussion boards; directed wider reading including access to electronic library and e-books.
Learning Activities
During completion of this module, the learning activities undertaken to achieve the module learning outcomes are stated below:
Student Learning Hours
(Normally totalling 200 hours):
(Note: Learning hours include both contact hours and hours spent on other learning activities)
Lecture/Core Content Delivery20
Tutorial/Synchronous Support Activity10
Asynchronous Class Activity6
Independent Study158
Personal Development Plan6
200 Hours Total

**Indicative Resources: (eg. Core text, journals, internet access)

The following materials form essential underpinning for the module content and ultimately for the learning outcomes:

There is no core text for this module all are considered essential reading:

Aveyard, H., Sharp, P. and Wooliams, M. (2015) A Beginners Guide to Critical Thinking and Writing in Health and Social Care. Maidenhead: McGraw Hill.

Aveyard, H. (2019) Doing a Literature Review in Health and Social Care. A Practical Guide (4th Ed). Maidenhead: McGraw Hill.

Gerrish, K. and Lathlean, J. (2015) The Research Process in Nursing. Chichester: John Wiley.

Glasper, A. and Rees, C. (2017) Nursing and Healthcare Research at a Glance. Chichester: John Wiley.

Greenhalgh, T. (2019) How to Read a Paper: The Basis for Evidence Based Medicine and Heathcare (6th Ed). Chichester: John Wiley.

Walker, J. and Almond, P. (2010) Interpreting Statistical Findings: A Guide for Health Professionals and Students. Maidenhead: Open University Press.

In addition to these texts students will be directed to a wide range of international, national and local information to support the module content and learning outcomes.

(**N.B. Although reading lists should include current publications, students are advised (particularly for material marked with an asterisk*) to wait until the start of session for confirmation of the most up-to-date material)

Engagement Requirements

In line with the Academic Engagement Procedure, Students are defined as academically engaged if they are regularly engaged with timetabled teaching sessions, course-related learning resources including those in the Library and on the relevant learning platform, and complete assessments and submit these on time. Please refer to the Academic Engagement Procedure at the following link: Academic engagement procedure

Where a module has Professional, Statutory or Regulatory Body requirements these will be listed here:
Attendance at synchronous sessions (lectures, workshops, and tutorials), completion of asynchronous activities, and submission of assessments to meet the learning outcomes of the module.

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Supplemental Information

Programme BoardBiological Sciences and Health
Assessment Results (Pass/Fail) No
Subject PanelHealth L7-11
ModeratorConstantina Papadopoulou
External ExaminerL Galloway
Accreditation DetailsNMC
Version Number


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Assessment: (also refer to Assessment Outcomes Grids below)
Formative Assessment
This module is formatively assessed by group discussion on the content of the individual and group learning activities that are embedded within each of the learning units. This may be achieved in face to face discussion in the classroom or by discussion remotely managed via the module VLE.

Each component of assessment must be passed at 40%. This is to comply with NMC Quality Assurance Framework for Nursing and Education (2013, updated 2017)and in exception to the UWS regulatory framework.

Component 1
Online class test: 30% of the module total - 1200 word equivalent. This component must by passed at 40%. This is to comply with NMC Quality Assurance Framework for Nursing and Education (2013, updated 2017) and in exception to the UWS regulatory framework.
Component 2
Written critical appraisal:50% of the module total - 2000 words.

This component must by passed at 40%. This is to comply with NMC Quality Assurance Framework for Nursing and Education (2013, updated 2017) and in exception to the UWS regulatory framework.
Component 3
A detailed account of the process of conducting an online database search:20% of the module total - 800 words.

This component must by passed at 40%.This is to comply with NMC Quality Assurance Framework for Nursing and Education (2013, updated 2017) and in exception to the UWS regulatory framework.
(N.B. (i) Assessment Outcomes Grids for the module (one for each component) can be found below which clearly demonstrate how the learning outcomes of the module will be assessed.
(ii) An indicative schedule listing approximate times within the academic calendar when assessment is likely to feature will be provided within the Student Handbook.)

Assessment Outcome Grids (Footnote A.)

Component 1
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Class test (written)check mark check mark300

Component 2
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Review/ Article/ Critique/ Papercheck mark check mark500

Component 3
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Report of practical/ field/ clinical work check mark 200
Combined Total For All Components100% 0 hours

A. Referred to within Assessment Section above
B. Identified in the Learning Outcome Section above

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  1. More than one assessment method can be used to assess individual learning outcomes.
  2. Schools are responsible for determining student contact hours. Please refer to University Policy on contact hours (extract contained within section 10 of the Module Descriptor guidance note).
    This will normally be variable across Schools, dependent on Programmes &/or Professional requirements.

Equality and Diversity
In line with current legislation (Equality Act, 2010) and the UWS Equality, Diversity, and Human Rights Code, our modules are accessible and inclusive, with reasonable adjustment for different needs where appropriate. Module materials comply with University guidance on inclusive learning and teaching, and specialist assistive equipment, support provision and adjustment to assessment practice will be made in accordance with UWS policy and regulations. Where modules require practical and/or laboratory based learning or assessment required to meet accrediting body requirements the University will make reasonable adjustment such as adjustable height benches or assistance of a ‘buddy’ or helper.

Please refer to the UWS Equality and Diversity Policy at the following link: UWS Equality and Diversity Policy

UWS Equality and Diversity Policy
(N.B. Every effort will be made by the University to accommodate any equality and diversity issues brought to the attention of the School)

2014 University of the West of Scotland

University of the West of Scotland is a Registered Scottish Charity.

Charity number SC002520.