NMHS44020 Evid synthesis & translation

Academic Year 2023/2024

This module focuses on Evidence-Based Practice (EBP) principles, application, and context related to nursing and midwifery practice. EBP describes healthcare that is grounded in the best currently available scientific knowledge (evidence) while considering the unique conditions and preferences of the patient, as well as professional clinical knowledge and context (Melnyk 2014).

Healthcare professionals require competencies to research and implement EBP, including knowledge and skill in evidence synthesis and translating evidence into practice. The module aims to support students develop these competencies leading to enhanced EBP in their professional practice, which ultimately leads to better quality, safe, and individualised patient care.

Through the guided process of a research project (minor thesis), students engage in a professional practice issue, formulate a research question and retrieve the available scientific knowledge. Based on scientific knowledge retrieved, the student will either progress an evidence synthesis or evidence translation stream.

• Evidence synthesis involves a critical appraisal of existing scientific research using appropriate critical appraisal frameworks and reporting the findings and their application to practice.

• Evidence translation involves developing an evidence-informed implementation proposal appropriate for translation into practice that considers broader contextual evidence (preferences of patients, clinical knowledge and healthcare context central to EBP.

Melnyk BM, Gallagher-Ford L, Long LE, Fineout-Overholt E (2014). The establishment of evidence-based practice competencies for practicing registered nurses and advanced practice nurses in real-world clinical settings: proficiencies to improve healthcare quality, reliability, patient outcomes, and costs. Worldviews Evid Based Nurs 11(1) 5–15.

Show/hide contentOpenClose All

Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

Evidence Synthesis and Translation Pathway
• Critically reflect on one’s practice experience, stakeholder consultation, and preliminary literature review and formulate a problem statement and research question related to professional practice.

• Critically analyse and synthesise the theory and methods relevant to evidence-based practice and evaluate their application in healthcare.

• Plan and document a systematic search strategy drawing on a recognised evidence synthesis framework to locate and retrieve appropriate evidence corresponding to the research question.

Specific to Evidence Synthesis Pathway
• Critically reflect and examine an appropriate theoretical and methodological framework for evidence appraisal and
• Using a recognised critical appraisal tool, evaluate and synthesise the evidence concerning dimensions of
quality, transparency of reporting and its application to practice.

Specific to Evidence Translation Pathway
• Critically reflect and examine appropriate theoretical and methodological frameworks for evidence translation in healthcare.
• Critically reflect on the existing synthesised evidence relevant to your research question and develop an evidence-informed
implementation proposal appropriate for translation into your practice.

Indicative Module Content:

• Key concepts and framework of Evidence-Based Practice (EBP)
• Formulating structured research questions
• Research paradigms and designs
• Developing systematic search strategies for evidence
• Evidence hierarchies and designs
• Critical appraisal of research evidence
• Key frameworks and theories for evidence translation (complexity theory, systems thinking, Implementation Science).
• Implementation Science tools and methods
• Evidence-informed Implementation proposal design

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours
Autonomous Student Learning




Small Group


Seminar (or Webinar)


Project Supervision




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
• Our teaching and learning approaches aim to promote student-led active learning and use inquiry-based and authentic learning. Teaching strategies encourage engagement, motivation, confidence building and deep learning.
• Students are engaged in a project that involves exploring a clinical topic from their practice setting and develop a problem statement, research questions and appropriate solutions.
• Students are scaffolded in theoretical, conceptual development and methodology using recorded lectures, student-centred participatory and interactive seminars and academic supervision.
• Collaborative learning is fostered by interprofessional (peer) dialogue and critical reflection (tutorials) from a variety of midwifery and nursing settings
• Online learning mechanisms are fostered through discussion forums to facilitate question‐posing, peer‐assessing, and learning.
• Learning is deepened by applying tools and conducting a systematic search strategy and critical appraisal.
• The module is delivered over two academic trimesters using blended face-to-face and online synchronous and asynchronous learning.
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade In Module Component Repeat Offered
Assignment: The students are required to submit provide a 2-minute pitch on the research question and follow with a written assignment on the background of to research question and search strategy Throughout the Trimester n/a Alternative non-linear conversion grade scale 50% No


Project: Students submit a dissertation (10-12,000 words) based on an evidence synthesis or evidence translation at the end of the Spring trimester Coursework (End of Trimester) n/a Alternative non-linear conversion grade scale 50% No



Carry forward of passed components
Remediation Type Remediation Timing
Repeat Within Two Trimesters
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, on an activity or draft prior to summative assessment
• Group/class feedback, post-assessment
• Peer review activities

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

• Active feedback is provided every 48 hours in response to any student-led assessment queries on the online ask a question forum. Through online workshops and breakout sessions, lecturers offer several mechanisms for live interactive feedback. • Individual written feedback will be provided following submission and grading of assignment 1. This feedback will feedforward for the summative assessment on key concepts related to ' Research question' 'Search Strategy'. Collective feedback on key themes is provided to the class through a short video session. • All dissertation chapters have two mechanisms for formative feedback (1) peer assessment and feedback (11) academic supervisor. Each chapter has a rubric developed to enhance feedback.

Selected reading
More extensive readings are provided through the module in Brightspace.

Barker, J., Linsley, P., Kane, R. (2016) Evidence-Based Practice for Nurses and Healthcare Professionals. 3rd edn. London: SAGE.

Brown, C. E., Kim, S. C., Stichler, J. F., & Fields, W. (2010). Predictors of knowledge, attitudes, use and future use of evidence-based practice among baccalaureate nursing students at two universities. Nurse Education Today, 30(6), 521-527. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nedt.2009.10.021

Caldwell, K., Coleman, K., Copp, G., Bell, L., & Ghazi, F. (2007). Preparing for professional practice: How well does professional training equip health and social care practitioners to engage in evidence-based practice? Nurse Education Today, 27(6), 518-528. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nedt.2006.08.014

Clark, A. M. (2013). Getting streetwise: A metaphor for empowering nurses for evidence-based practice. Nurse Education Today, 33(1), 3-4. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nedt.2012.08.010

Curtis, K., Fry, M., Shaban, R. Z., & Considine, J. (2017). Translating research findings to clinical nursing practice. Journal of clinical nursing, 26(5-6), 862–872. doi:10.1111/jocn.13586

Ellis, P. (2019) Evidence-based Practice in Nursing. 4th edn. London: SAGE
Lehane, E., Agreli, H., O’ Connor, S., Hegarty, J., Leahy-Warren, P., Bennet, D., Blake, C., Burke, F., Corrigan, M., Drennan, J., Hayes, M., Heffernan, E., Horgan, F., Lynch, H., McVeigh, J., Müller, N., O’ Keeffe, E., O’ Tuathaigh, C., Sahm, L. and Savage, E. (2018). Development of a Competency Framework for Clinical Effectiveness Education in Ireland. Report prepared for Department of Health, Clinical Effectiveness Unit, National Patient Safety Office, Ireland.
Available At: https://health.gov.ie/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Competency-Framework-clinical-effectiveness-education-Dec-2018.pdf

Makic, M. B. F., Martin, S. A., Burns, S., Philbrick, D., & Rauen, C. (2013). Putting Evidence Into Nursing Practice: Four Traditional Practices Not Supported by the Evidence. [Article]. Critical Care Nurse, 33(2), 28-44. DOI: 10.4037/ccn2013787
Name Role
Dr Carmel Davies Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Dr Bridget Johnston Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Professor Corina Naughton Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Dr Deirdre O'Donnell Lecturer / Co-Lecturer