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Evaluating Research in Communication Disorders, 7th edition

  • Robert F. Orlikoff
  • Nicholas E. Schiavetti
  • Dale Evan Metz

Published by Pearson (April 3rd 2014) - Copyright © 2015

7th edition

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A carefully organized and engaging comprehensive guide to analyzing research articles.


Extensively revised and updated in its sixth edition, Evaluating Research in Communicative Disorders teaches both students and practitioners to read, understand, and evaluate research published in communicative sciences and disorders journals. With an emphasis on scientific principals and scientific inquiry, this richly illustrated and interactive text provides a solid foundation for clinical practice for all levels of readers by linking research information on treatment efficacy to direct clinical applications.


The sixth edition of Evaluating Research in Communicative Disorders has been reorganized to reflect the structure typically found in a research articles. Accompanied by helpful tables and figures, each chapter begins with an outline and concludes with a list of key terms and a newly developed set of study questions.

Table of contents


1 Research and Practice in Communicative Disorders

Knowledge Acquisition

The Scientific Method

          Scientific Theory

          The Conduct of Scientific Research

                   Statement of the Problem

                   Method of Investigation

                   Results of Investigation


The Nature of Research in Communicative Disorders

          Evidence-Based Practice

          Research—Practice Relationships

                   Research-Driven Relationships

                   Practice-Driven Relationships

                   Shared-Interest Relationships

The Editorial Process in the Publication of a Research Article

The Challenge of Cyberspace

          Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Information Sources

          The Knowledge-Base of the Reader

Key Terms

Study Questions



2 The Introduction Section of the Research Article

The Nature of Technical Writing

Components of the Introduction

          General Statement of the Problem

          The Rationale for the Study



          Review of the Literature

Research Questions and Hypotheses

Limitations of the Study

Example: Introduction to a Research Study

Key Terms

Study Questions


Evaluation Checklist: Introduction Section


3 Research Strategies in Communicative Disorders

Quantitative Research

          Variables in Empirical Research

                   Independent and Dependent Variables

                   Active and Attribute Variables

                   Continuous and Categorical Variables

          Experimental Research

                   Bivalent Experiments

                   Multivalent Experiments

                   Parametric Experiments

          Descriptive Research

                   Comparative Research

                   Developmental Research

                   Correlational Research

                   Survey Research

                   Retrospective Research

          Combined Experimental and Descriptive Research

          The Title of a Quantitative Research Article

Qualitative Research

          Types of Qualitative Research

                   Observational Research

                   Interview Research

                   Narrative Research

                   Case Study Research

          The Title of a Qualitative Research Article

Mixed-Methods Research

Key Terms

Study Questions


Evaluation Checklist: The Title


4 Research Design in Communicative Disorders

Quantitative Research Design

          Group Research Designs

                   Between-Subjects Designs

                   Within-Subjects Designs

                   Mixed Designs

          Single-Subject Research Designs

                   Withdrawal and Reversal Designs

                   Multiple-Baseline Designs

                   Changing-Criterion Designs

Qualitative and Mixed-Methods Research Design

Validity Issues in Research Design

          Internal Validity

                   Control of Variability


           External Validity



Pilot Research

Key Terms

Study Questions



5 The Method Section of the Research Article

Components of the Method Section

          Subjects (Participants)  

                   Models and Specimens

                   Sample Size

                   Selection Criteria

                   Protection of Subjects and Participants


                   Data Acquisition

                   Levels of Measurement

                   Reliability of Measurements

                   Validity of Measurements


                   Behavioral Instruments


                   Tasks and Protocol

                   Appropriateness of Measurement

                   Data Analysis

Key Terms

Study Questions


Evaluation Checklist: Method Section


6 The Results Section of the Research Article

Organization of Quantitative Results

          Data Distributions

                   Tabular and Graphic Presentations

          Descriptive Statistics

                   Measures of Central Tendency

                   Measures of Variability

                   Measures of Skewness

                   Measures of Kurtosis

          Some Characteristics of Clear Data Organization

Data Analysis

          The Normal Curve Model

                   Parametric and Nonparametric Statistics

          Bivariate Descriptive Statistics

                   Describing Relationships

          Statistical Significance

                   Testing a Null Hypothesis     

          Correlational Analysis

                   Analyzing Relationships

          Inferential Statistics

                   Analyzing Differences

                   Effect Size and the Power of Statistical Tests

          Some Characteristics of Clear Data Analysis

Data Display

          Some Characteristics of Clear Data Display

Key Terms

Study Questions


Evaluation Checklist: Results Section


7 The Discussion and Conclusions Section of the Research Article

Organization of the Discussion and Conclusions Section

          Relationship of Conclusions to Preceding Parts of the Article

                   The Research Problem

                   The Method of Investigation

                   The Results of the Investigation

          Relationship of Results to Previous Research

          Limitations of the Research Study

          Implications of the Research Study

                   Theoretical Implications

                   Practical Implications

                   Implications for Future Research

The Abstract of the Research Article

Key Terms

Study Questions


Evaluation Checklist: Discussion and Conclusions


8 Evaluating Treatment Efficacy Research

Evidence-Based Practice

          Generalizability of Research Findings


                   Sample Size

                   Systematic Replication

          Levels of Evidence

                   Framing the Question

Experimental Designs for Studying Treatment Efficacy

          Pre-Experimental Designs

                   One-Shot Case Study Design

                   One-Group Pretest—Posttest Design

                   Static-Group Comparison Design

          Quasi-Experimental Designs

                   Nonequivalent Control-Group Design

                   Time-Series Designs

          True Experimental Designs

                   Randomized Pretest—Posttest Control-Group Designs

                   Solomon Randomized Four-Group Design

          Ethics of Using Control Groups in Treatment Efficacy Research

Systematic Reviews

          Meta-Analysis of Treatment Efficacy Research

          Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guidelines

Key Terms

Study Questions



Appendix A:  Complete Evaluation Checklist

Appendix B:  A Compendium of Journals in Communicative Sciences and Disorders

Appendix C:  Proclamation of the Association of American Medical Colleges and the National Health Council


Subject Index

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