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HSC1061 - Introduction to research in health science

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Leader: Dr Rhian Parker


Peninsula First semester 2007 (Day)


This unit provides an introduction to quantitative and qualitative research skills in health care. It will also provide an overview of the field of health informatics, including sources of information, organisation of information, quantitative evaluation of information, and healthcare information networks. Disciplines such as public health, health promotion and social work are following the example of the more clinical fields such as medicine in their use of evidence based practice. In this unit, students will learn to access and critically engage with the evidence base in their chosen fields. Students will develop essential skills for both study and professional life.


By the completion of this unit, it is expected that the student will be able to:

  1. explain hardware and software components of a computer, operating systems and graphic user interface (GUI) environments;
  2. Select and use appropriate software tools (spreadsheets, database applications, multimedia software etc.) in support of health data acquisition, entry, management, analysis, planning, reporting and presentations;
  3. correctly apply data handling procedures including input, processing, storing, retrieval and evaluation;
  4. evaluate the integrity and comparability of data and identify gaps in data sources;
  5. outline the importance of research to the foundations and development of the professional health disciplines;
  6. summarize research principles, the research process and the major research designs;
  7. identify ethical issues and key concepts involved with the research process; and
  8. conduct a literature search and demonstrate a basic ability to read and critically analyse the literature.


Research report (research question, literature review, design, methods, methodology) and mock ethics application: 55%
Health informatics (case study report): 5%
spreadsheet skills: 10%
Database skills: 10%
Information systems report: 20%.
Hurdle requirements: students are required to attend 80% of tutorials.

Contact hours

1 hour lecture, 3 hours tutorials or small group classes per week + one 3-hour site visit per semester.