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ANS Adv Nurs Sci. 2013 Apr-Jun;36(2):106-17. doi: 10.1097/ANS.0b013e3182901f8d.

Use of the critical decision method in nursing research: an integrative review.

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Simmons College, School of Nursing and Health Sciences, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.


The focus of this article is the background and use of the critical decision method in nursing research. The purpose is to present a synthesis of the body of work whose authors used the critical decision method to explore nurses' cognitive work. For this integrative review of literature, I used the 5-step process: problem formulation, literature search, data evaluation, data analysis, and presentation. Synthesis of the 7 studies uncovered evidence of nurses' cognitive processes and demands of their practice environments and affirmed the method as a valuable tool for eliciting experienced nurses' practice knowledge making nursing expertise explicit.

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