Why is the philosophy of science important for health care research? What impact do world-views and paradigms have on the research process and the knowledge it generates? Why do some kinds of concepts get replaced by others? This book covers the major perspectives in the philosophy of science and critically discusses their relevance to health care research, using examples of paradigms, concepts, theories and research findings in the health sciences. It makes sense of the bewildering variety of assumptions, world-views and epistemiological implications of the different research methods. It enables the reader to become an informed consumer of scholarship on health care issues. The authors describe how health care research has been influenced by positivistic and interpretative approaches, and how it has recently been challenged by postmodernist philosophies. All of these approaches have research methods aligned with them which have taken their place in the panoply of tools at the disposal of the health scientist.
Written in a clear and accessible style, "Evidence-Based Research" demonstrates how the different philosophical bases to research impact in real-life health care work and research. It is key reading for the growing number of people involved in health care research in universities and health settings, and is particularly suitable for advanced undergraduate and masters students researching in the health care sciences.