Correlational Research: Importance and Use in Nursing and Health Research
Item Type:Journal Article
Citation:Elizabeth A. Curtis, Catherine Comiskey and Orla Dempsey, Correlational Research: Importance and Use in Nursing and Health Research, Nurse Researcher, 2015
TARA Correlational Research Revised 30.06.15 2.pdf (Accepted for publication (author's copy) - Peer Reviewed) 336.7Kb
Background and Discussion: The importance of correlational research has been reported in the literature yet many research texts including nursing books offer little discussion on the design; with several providing approximately one to three pages in chapters entitled, for example, quantitative designs. This article targets this gap by focusing key considerations for planning a correlational study. Specifically, it discusses the importance and purpose of correlational research, its application, analysis and interpretation with contextualisations to nursing and health research. Review Methods and Data Sources: Materials were sourced primarily from books on research and statistics as few relevant research papers were located. Several databases were used and the date range for searches was 1980-2015. Conclusion: Findings from correlational research can be used to determine prevalence, relationships among variables and to forecast events from current data and knowledge. In spite of its many uses however, prudence is required when using the design and analysing data. To assist researchers in reducing mistakes key issues were singled out for discussion and several options put forward for analysing data. Implications for Healthcare Practice: Correlational research is used widely by nurses and other health professionals therefore this article should be particularly useful for novice researchers from these disciplines. Furthermore, findings generated from such research have utility for healthcare practice: they can be used for example, to inform decision-making in nursing/healthcare and improve or initiate health related activities/changes.
Type of material:Journal Article
Series/Report no:Nurse Researcher
Availability:Full text available