Welcome to healthcare research

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 evaluate what makes healthcare research good and helpful, and how it can be usefully applied to practice.

This week …

Through this week’s activities you will:

  • identify the link between research and practice
  • explore the role of paradigms in creating new knowledge
  • examine what makes a good research question
  • consider how you might frame a question from an area in your own practice

This short course is the introductory two-week course for a Program in Research Methodology, Design and Methods which forms part of the MSc Nursing online degree at Coventry University delivered on FutureLearn.

Meet the team

Your lead educator is Dr Laurence Baldwin, a Senior Lecturer in Mental Health Nursing at Coventry University.

Photo of Dr Laurence Baldwin

Laurence is joined by Annie Pettifer, a Senior Lecturer in Adult Nursing at Coventry University.

Photo of Annie Pettifer

You can follow Laurence and Annie by selecting the link to their FutureLearn profile page and selecting ‘follow’. That way, you’ll be able to see all the comments that they make.

Checking your progress …

When you reach the end of a step and have understood everything, click the Mark as Complete button. This will update your progress page, and will help you to keep track of which steps you’ve done. Any steps you’ve completed will turn blue on your To Do list.

You can check your progress page by clicking the icon at the top of every step, where you’ll see what percentage of the course steps you’ve marked as complete.


This resource uses some examples that may be distressing to some learners. Saying that, these will be examples only and will not form the main part of the learning in this course.

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This article is from the free online course:

Healthcare Research: For Healthcare Professionals

Coventry University