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What is the formulation of the research question in systematic review - Pubrica

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WHAT IS THE
FORMULATION OF THE
RESEARCH QUESTION
IN SYSTEMATIC REVIEW
An Academic presentation by
Dr. Nancy Agens, Head, Technical Operations, Pubrica
Group: www.pubrica.com
Email: [email protected]
Today's Discussion
Outline
In brief
Introduction
PICO
SPIDER
SPICE
ECLIPSE
Conclusion
In Brief
Formulating a research question is the challenging task for a
researcher while initiating a systematic review. This article explains
the different frameworks available for formulating a high-quality
research question which includes PICO, SPIDER, SPICE,
ECLIPSE. A well-formulated research question needs to have
extreme specificity and preciseness that guides the implementation
of the systematic review while keeping in mind the identification of
variables and population of interest.
Introduction
The first step in executing a Systematic Review is to formulate the research question.
Without formulating a well-focused research question, it can be challenging and timeconsuming to identify suitable studies and search for relevant evidence.
Practitioners of Evidence-Based Practice (EBP) often use a specialized framework,
called PICO, to form the question and facilitate the literature search.
A systematic review question typically focused on narrow parameters and usually
fitted into the PICO question format.
PICO
P – Patient | Population | Problem
Most important characteristics of patients. Examples: Gender, age, and disease or condition.
I – Intervention or exposure
Main intervention. Examples: Drug treatment, diagnostic and screening test.
C – Comparison or Control
Main alternative. Examples: Standard therapy, placebo, no treatment and gold standard.
O – Outcome measures
For quantitative systematic review question formation, PICO can be used along with the
variant such as PICOS (S-Study design), PICOC (C-Context), and PICOT (T-timeframe).
Contd..
Table 1: Search
Strategy
Contd..
Systematic review questions may be broad or narrow in focus, but it is essential
to formulate the research question with care to avoid lacking relevant studies
or collecting a potentially biased result set.
SPIDER
S – Sample
A qualitative research study is not easy to generalize as the sample is preferred
over a patient.
PI – Phenomenon of Interest
Rather than interventions, it looks at the reasons for behaviour and decisions.
D – Design
The type of research through interview or survey.
E – Evaluation
Outcome measures.
R – Research type
Quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods
SPICE
S – Setting (Where?)
Based on the location or environment relevant to the research.
P – Perspective or Population (for Whom?)
The type of people that are being studied.
I – Intervention (What?)
The intervention, practice or treatment that are used for evaluation.
C – Comparison (compared with what?)
An intervention with which the author compares the above comparator.
E – Evaluation (with what result?)
The hypothetical result that is intended to evaluate.
ECLIPSE
E – Expectation
Improvement, Information or Innovation.
C – Client group
At whom the service is aimed.
L – Location
where is the service located?
I – Impact
Outcomes
P – Professionals
who is involved in providing or improving the service?
Contd..
Se – Service
For which service are you looking for information.
Once you have a defined research question, it is essential to make sure your
research is original, and it is not already addressed.
It can be identified through a thorough search in the systematic review databases
(such as Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, PROSPERO, and
Systematic Review Da ta Repository (SRDR)) and be sure to check with
published reviews as well as registered protocols.
Conclusion
A well-designed research question is a starting point in conducting a high-quality
systematic review, as it will determine the nature and scope of the systematic review,
and there are several frameworks available for formulating a research questing and
search for a new finding.
Once the research question formulation is done, it is very much necessary to check with
the database to avoid repetition.
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