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J Clin Nurs. 1996 Jul;5(4):207-12.

Using vignettes to collect data for nursing research studies: how valid are the findings?


Vignettes are simulations of real events which can be used in research studies to elicit subject's knowledge, attitudes or opinions according to how they state they would behave in the hypothetical situation depicted. Advantages associated with the use of vignettes as research tools include: the ability to collect information simultaneously from large numbers of subjects, to manipulate a number of variables at once in a manner that would not be possible in observation studies, absence of observer effect and avoidance of the ethical dilemmas commonly encountered during observation. Difficulties include problems establishing reliability and validity, especially external validity. This paper considers the advantages and disadvantages associated with the use of vignettes as data collection tools, concluding with a check-list to help critique vignettes studies.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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