Advanced Practice Registered Nurse

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Advanced Practice Registered Nurse

What strategies will you use in your new practice as an advance registered nurse to review and critique literature pertinent to your practice?

The Case for Evidence-Based Practice as an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse or APRN

As an advanced practice registered nurse or APRN, one is trained on the appreciation of scholarly literature as well as how to conduct research. This is a process that starts for RNs the moment they become baccalaureate nurses. But to appreciate research and its outcomes, the APRN must have the skills necessary to critique the same. This means critically examining the published literature for validity, reliability, and usefulness in clinical practice. For as much as the results of a study may be statistically significant, they must also be clinically significant in order to inspired evidence-based practice or EBP (Ranganathan et al., 2015; Mariani & Pêgo-Fernandes, 2014). The purpose of this short paper is to outline the strategies that the APRN may employ to critique research related to their area of practice.Advanced Practice Registered Nurse


Strategies for Reviewing and Critiquing Literature

The strategies that the APRN can use to review and critique literature pertinent to their area of practice include the following:Advanced Practice Registered Nurse

Spotlight on Conceptual Framework

The conceptual framework of a study is the spotlight that guides the study from design to completion through the labyrinth of research obstacles. It can be likened to a ship at sea whose captain depends on the lighthouse to avoid rocks. Without a sound and robust conceptual framework, many studies cannot stand on their feet in terms of pertinent research questions or hypotheses as well as internal validity. The APRN would therefore do well to determine first if a study has a conceptual framework.

Methodological Analysis

        Then they should investigate if the research methodology used allows for string internal validity and reliability. It is these two that will determine whether the results can be replicated and generalized.

Evidentiary Value

Lastly but not least, the APRN must make sure the literature they are critiquing has got sufficient evidentiary value to influence evidence-based practice. For instance, they must determine if the study is a systematic review and meta-analysis or a randomized controlled trial. The former provides the highest level of evidence at level I on the pyramid of evidence.


Mariani, A.W. & Pêgo-Fernandes, P.M. (2014). Statistical significance and clinical significance. Sao Paulo Medical Journal, 132(2).

Ranganathan, P., & Pramesh, C.S., & Buyse, M. (2015). Common pitfalls in statistical analysis: Clinical versus statistical significance. Perspectives in Clinical Research, 6(3), 169-170.

Advanced Practice Registered Nurse