QUALITATIVE RESEARCH When conducting research, it is possible to move in multiple directions rather than toward a specific focal point. These multiple directions create components of the research that do not align with one another. It is particularly a problem for novice researchers. For this final assignment, it will be critical to ensure that all parts of your submission—problem statement, purpose statement, research questions, and data collection, or sampling—are aligned. This review will help lead to a focused research plan, which is more likely to be successful at addressing the research question.

One important consideration is how valid and reliable the data and collection tools are for a research plan. For reasons of expediency, researchers find a sample of a specific population because it is not possible to research an entire population. In quantitative studies, statistical formulas are used to determine the number required from the sample to ensure validity of the study results. In qualitative studies, the simple rule of 12–20 participants is accepted based on the total population. Participants must meet the criteria outlined as specific for the study. The sample comprises individuals who can represent the total population. From the data gathered, the researcher can determine causation, correlation, or inference.

Remember, reliable data are data findings that can be repeated. In other words, the results from the data collection are consistent across different samples and time periods. Valid data are data findings that are accurate and relevant.


For this assignment, you will develop a thorough, 5–9 page research plan based on your work on previous assignments. The plan will be based on either qualitative or quantitative methodologies, but not both. In addition to refining your previous work, you will also discuss the concepts of reliability and validity as they pertain to data collection.


The purpose of a research plan is to provide a brief overview of the key components of a planned research study. The plan helps to build quality into the research process. During this course, you have developed an abbreviated research plan contributing to a process improvement focused on decreasing the incidence of an HAC of your choice. As you have progressed through the course, you may have improved your ideas and revised your writing based on new information and the expertise you have gained.

To complete this final assignment, combine relevant work from your previous assignments into one seamless research plan. Be sure to incorporate any useful feedback suggested by your instructor and properly cite all resources used to support your plan.

For this assignment, it is suggested that you build on the work that you did in the Research Problem and Purpose Statements assignment, as well as the research questions and methods assignment that fits the method you have chosen.

This assignment has four distinct parts.

Part 1: Problem Statement

For this first part of the assignment, present your revised and finalized problem statement based on your work in the Research Problem and Purpose Statements assignment.

Additionally, explain how the purpose statement is grounded within the context and evidence of your chosen HAC and the health care setting that is being used as the basis for your research plan. Point out the ways in which the problem statement will help to establish the alignment of other parts of the research plan.

This part should be about 1 page long.

Use the following Problem Statement Checklist when finalizing your problem statement.

Problem Statement Checklist

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