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Online course

Healthcare Research: For Healthcare Professionals

Discover how to conduct and evaluate healthcare research, and use your findings to inform best practice and guidelines.

Healthcare Research: For Healthcare Professionals

This course is one of the building blocks that leads to a Nursing degree.

Discover the role that healthcare research plays in developing best practice

Research is a vital part of healthcare. It underpins best practice, provides evidence for national and international guidelines, and ultimately improves outcomes for patients. This online course provides an introduction to healthcare research.

You will explore how new research pushes forward practice, considering some of the underlying assumptions that inform how research is constructed. You will look at different design approaches and methodologies used in healthcare research projects, evaluating what makes healthcare research good and helpful, and how it can be usefully applied to practice.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 16 secondsWe’re always taught from an early age that we must wash our hands, and all healthcare staff, including us nurses, are constantly told that we must wash our hands. But why? Sure, it kills the germs on our hands, but have you ever come across anyone dying simply because they didn’t wash their hands? Well, we don’t have to look far to prove this. In 2007, 90 patients in a major UK hospital group died from clostridium difficile infection, partly because staff were so busy, they just didn’t have time to wash their hands. And how do we know that hand hygiene is so important? From evidence and evidence comes from observing, recording and investigating new and better ways of doing things.

Skip to 0 minutes and 58 secondsThat’s what we call research. Hi, my name’s Laurence Baldwin and I’m the Module Leader for Healthcare Research here at Coventry University. My job is to demystify research and show how it informs evidence based practice that can improve the lives of your patients and service users. So, in this open course we’ll be looking at how research is used to inform healthcare practice. We need to go into the background of how research works to look at what is good and bad evidence, and how this informs best practice for our patients and service users. We’ll look at practical issues to see how research moves from the academic into clinical practice to change and improve lives.

Skip to 1 minute and 41 secondsSo, if you are a nurse or a healthcare professional out there, and you’re a big believer in understanding why we do the things we do, why not join us. Expect to be challenged. Well, I think my hands are clean now.

What topics will you cover?

  • Introduction to research methods
  • How research relates to practice
  • How our assumptions shape research
  • Developing researchable questions
  • The research process
  • Principles of ethics
  • Research governance

When would you like to start?

  • Available now
  • Date to be announced

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you'll be able to...

  • Explore the link between research and best practice in healthcare
  • Investigate how practice can be enhanced by developing new research.
  • Identify how underlying assumptions and philosophies inform the way we do research.
  • Develop an understanding of the importance of ethical research.

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for healthcare workers working at all levels and across all disciplines. It will give you the opportunity to develop or advance your skills in healthcare research, and get a taste of what studying an online MSc in Nursing would be like.

Who will you learn with?

Laurence Baldwin

Senior Lecturer in Mental Health Nursing at Coventry University, leading the MSc Nursing Online Research Methods Module, and on-campus Research Methods, and Children and Young People's MH modules.

Annie Pettifer

Senior Lecturer in Adult Nursing at Coventry University. Educator for Online MSc in Nursing, Research Methods module. On campus, module leader for modules in End of Life Care and Research Methods

Who developed the course?

Coventry secured a gold rating in the UK government’s 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) and is the country’s top modern university in the Guardian University Guide 2018.

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Join this course


  • Access to this course for 4 weeks
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes

Upgrade - $79

  • Unlimited access to this course
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes
  • Certificate of Achievement to prove your success when you're eligible