MEDIC ST 3104AOL - Research and Critical Appraisal Part 1

Online - Semester 1 - 2024

This full-year online course involves lectures, workshops, and small group tutorials to provide broad competency in clinical and basic research theory and practice as the essential foundation for current medical knowledge and continuing advances.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code MEDIC ST 3104AOL
    Course Research and Critical Appraisal Part 1
    Coordinating Unit Medical Studies
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s Online
    Contact Up to 4 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Prerequisites MEDIC ST 2000A/B, MEDIC ST 2101A/B, MEDIC ST 2102A/B, MEDIC ST 2103A/B, MICRO 2506 and an approved Level II elective; or by approval of the Dean of Medicine
    Restrictions Available to MBBS students only
    Course Description This full-year online course involves lectures, workshops, and small group tutorials to provide broad competency in clinical and basic research theory and practice as the essential foundation for current medical knowledge and continuing advances.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Professor Andrea Yool

    Course Coordinator

    Prof Andrea Yool
    Professor of Physiology
    Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences
    University of Adelaide
    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

    Lectures for theis course are delivered as part of the integrated Year 3 MBBS Program.

    Students will need to work in small groups outside the scheduled program to meet the course requirements.
  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1. To understand the role of research to inform excellence in clinical practice
    2. Learn the principles, practices and processes of scientific enquiry
    3. Plan a small research project involving experimental design or qualitative research methodologies where relevant.
    4. Assess the strengths and weaknesses of a published paper, and its relevance to clinical pratice or medical science.
    5. Learn how to keep up-to-date with research.
    6. Carry out independent learning and work effectively
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)

    Attribute 1: Deep discipline knowledge and intellectual breadth

    Graduates have comprehensive knowledge and understanding of their subject area, the ability to engage with different traditions of thought, and the ability to apply their knowledge in practice including in multi-disciplinary or multi-professional contexts.


    Attribute 2: Creative and critical thinking, and problem solving

    Graduates are effective problems-solvers, able to apply critical, creative and evidence-based thinking to conceive innovative responses to future challenges.


    Attribute 3: Teamwork and communication skills

    Graduates convey ideas and information effectively to a range of audiences for a variety of purposes and contribute in a positive and collaborative manner to achieving common goals.


    Attribute 4: Professionalism and leadership readiness

    Graduates engage in professional behaviour and have the potential to be entrepreneurial and take leadership roles in their chosen occupations or careers and communities.


    Attribute 5: Intercultural and ethical competency

    Graduates are responsible and effective global citizens whose personal values and practices are consistent with their roles as responsible members of society.


    Attribute 6: Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural competency

    Graduates have an understanding of, and respect for, Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander values, culture and knowledge.


    Attribute 7: Digital capabilities

    Graduates are well prepared for living, learning and working in a digital society.

    2, 3, 4, 5

    Attribute 8: Self-awareness and emotional intelligence

    Graduates are self-aware and reflective; they are flexible and resilient and have the capacity to accept and give constructive feedback; they act with integrity and take responsibility for their actions.

  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    There are no required resources for this course.
    Recommended Resources
    Research Design Resources

    Bordage, G & Dawson, B 2003, “Experimental study design and grant writing in eight steps and 28 questions’, Medical Education, vol. 37, p. 376-385.

    Grimes DA & Schulz KF, 2002, “An overview of clinical research: the lay of the land.” The Lancet, vol.359, issue 9300, p. 8.

    Hansen, E 2006, Successful qualitative health research: a practical introduction, Allen and Unwin, Crows Nest.

    Moher, D, Schulz, KF, Altman, DG 2001, ‘The CONSORT statement: revised recommendations for improving the quality of reports of parallel group randomised trials. BMC Medical Research Methodology, vol. 1, p. 2

    Riegelman, RK 2000, Studying a study and testing a test, 4th edn. Lippincott, Williams and Wilkins, Philadelphia PA.

    Rossenfeldt, FL, Dowling, JT, Pepe, S & Fulleton, M 2000, ‘How to write a paper for publication’, Heart Lung and Circulation, vol. 9, p. 82-87.

    Critical Appraisal resources

    Introductory paper: “How to critically appraise an article” by Young and Solomon

    Site with checklist style worksheets for the critical appraisal of different types of research

    Elwood, M 2000, Critical appraisal of epidemiological studies and clinical trials, OUP, Oxford, New York.

    Greenhalgh, T 2010, How to Read a Paper: The Basics of Evidence-Based Medicine. Wiley BlackwellPublishing, Oxford.

    Research Ethics

    Emanuel, EJ, Wendler, D & Grady C 2000, ‘What makes clinical research ethical?’, Journal of the American Medical Association, vol 283, p. 2701-2711.


    Ethical issues checklist for human research:

    Ethical requirements in animal, genetic and human research:

    Indigenous health:

    Regulations on the procurement and use of human tissue/ cadavers:

    Informed consent, use of case notes, de-identification, confidentiality and privacy:

    Examples of Research Ethics approval committees and their requirements:

    Group Work and Peer Assessment

    Group Work:

    Peer Assessment:

    Statistics Resources

    Bland, M 2000, An introduction to medical statistics, 3rd edn, Oxford University Press, Oxford.

    Campbell, MJ & Machin, D 2000, Medical statistics: a commonsense approach, John Wiley & Sons, New York.

    Dawson-Saunders, B & Trapp, RG 1994, Basic and clinical biostatistics, Appleton & Lange, Norwalk.

    Gore, SM & Altman, DG 1991, Statistics in practice, British Medical Association, London.

    Petrie, A & Sabin, C 2009, Medical statistics at a glance, 3rd edn, Wiley-Blackwell, New Jersey.

    Referencing Style

    The University of Adelaide’s Harvard Referencing Style:

    Endnote guide

    The University of Adelaide library’s guide to Endnote:

    How to export from PubMed into Endnote, especially see section on how to convert to full Journal titles
    Online Learning
    There are a range of online resources available in the recommended resources.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    There are two main components of this course: The Research Proposal and the Critical Appraisal.  Both activities have a strong focus on working collaboratively in teams.  Each component is supported by a series of lectures.

    Research Proposal
    Students work in small groups under the supervision of a Academic staff member or Clinical titleholder to produce a research proposal.  Students will form their own Research Proposal Groups (comprising 4 students), approach potential supervisors, and work with the identified supervisor to develop and coordinate their research project proposal.

    Critical Appraisal
    Students work in pairs to critically appraise a published research paper with respect to scientific rationale, methodology, interpretation of results, conclusions, and contribution to medical knowledge or clinical practice.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    Provided students work systematically through the two activities within their groups, the workload for this course is manageable.
    Learning Activities Summary
    The primary mode is small group learning for the development of the Research Proposal and the Critical appraisal.  Students will need to demonstrate the ability to self direct their learning with support, and time manage their projects.

    Further details will be provide in the Course Handbook.
    Specific Course Requirements
    The course requires students to participate in small groups for both the research proposal and critical appraisal task.  These tasks cannot be completed individually.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    The final mark (out of 100) is based on assessments carried out over the full year (in Part 1 and Part 2).

    Assessment Task Task Type Timing Weighting Course Learning Outcome(s0 Assessed
    Core skills online modules Summative

    Semester 1

      12% (8 x1.5%) 1, 2, 5, 6
    Final research proposal Summative Semester 2 50% 1, 2, 3, 6
    Critical appraisal - oral presentation Summative Semester 2 25% 1, 2, 4, 6
    Groupwork log Summative Semester 2 5% 3
    Supervisor assessment Summative Semester 2 8% 2, 5, 6
    Academic Progression Requirements
    Progression from one year to the next in the MBBS is dependent on the student successfully completing a compulsory annual examination course in which a full year’s learning is assessed.

    To progress into year 4 a student must pass MEDIC ST 3000A and 3000B - Third Year MBBS Examination Part 1 and Part 2 courses and have achieved a pass in all year level components (24 units).

    To successfully complete the MEDIC ST 3000A and MEDIC ST 3000B courses, the student must pass the end of year examinations and have successfully completed all year level component courses (24 units).

    IF a student fails the compulsory examination course no passing grade will be received for any core medical studies courses.

    IF a student has not completed all required MEDIC ST units of the year they must successfully complete an appropriate remedial course of the same or greater value as specified in Term 4 of the same academic year.

    A student will only be eligible for summer school if the following criteria are met:
    • The student does not have a recorded breach of genuine academic misconduct;
    • The student has completed all core assessment tasks within the failed course;
    • The student has attended more than 80% of core teaching activities across the academic year, within the failed course.
    Assessment Related Requirements
    A marking grid will be privided to all students which indicates how their final overall band will be determined.

    The final individual band is based on their final proposal band, groupwork ( satisfactory, borderline, unsatisfactory) and Supervision Attendance (group Work Logs)

    Students attendance and contribution is an important element of the assessment.

    Details of the assessment grids are provided within the course.
    Assessment Detail
    Complete assessment requirements for the MBBS Program and this Course  are set out in the year level assessment documents distributed at the start of each year.
    Details of the submission requirements will be provided in the Course.  Students may be required to submit the work through Turnitin.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    NOG (No Grade Associated)
    Grade Description
    CN Continuing

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Students will be provided with formative feedback on progress at the end of semester 1.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

    Students should familarise themselves with the University Policy on Additional Assessment/Replacement Assessment.
  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

    The MBBS Program has a regular program of evaluation.  In addition, student representatives are appointed to MBBS committees and are encouraged to report on issues of importance to students.
  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.