Introduction to Research in the Health Sciences, 5th Edition

Introduction to research in the health sciences 5By

  • Stephen Polgar, BSc(Hons), MSc, School of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia;
  • Shane A. Thomas, DipPubPol, PhD, MAPS, Professor and Director of Primary Care Research, Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences Monash University, Melbourne, Australia

Like the previous versions, the fifth edition of An Introduction to Research in the Health Sciences has two overall aims. 1) To introduce the fundamental principles of research methodology and explain how these principles are applied for conducting research in the health sciences. 2) To demonstrate how evidence produced through research is applied to solving problems in everday health care. This book is written in an accessible style. It maintains the traditions of the previous editions, with examples, questions, feedback sections, and an extensive glossary.

New to This Edition

  • Includes a chapter focussing on the use of qualitative methods in health research
  • Includes a chapter for discussing systematic reviews and meta-analyses
  • Contains more revision questions
    Increased emphasis throughout on evidence based concepts
  • More and updated discussion of qualitative research methods
  • New section on basic epidemiological concepts as a research approach
  • More discussion of analysis and use of administrative and secondary data sets as research resources
  • Complete rewrite of the chapter on causal research
  • Stronger links between the sections on different stages of research

Key Features

  • Uses simple language and demystifies the jargon
  • Provides built-in feedback for readers to assess their own progress
  • Gives examples relating directly to the health sciences
  • Provides an extensive glossary for better understanding of the language of research
  • Addresses qualitative as well as quantitative research issues


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