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Research Terms & Methods to Review for Your NP Board Exam

If you’re approaching your NP board exam, research methods should definitely be on your list of topics to review—but it’s a tricky topic, especially if it’s one you haven’t visited in a while!

For a refresher on all things research-related, check out this SMNP video, “Revolutionizing Healthcare: The Groundbreaking Research of NPs Explained” by NP Ashton Glover. It’s a great resource that’ll help you tackle any questions about research you come across on exam day:

Key Terms for Your NP Board Exam

Ashton starts by going over some research topics that have shown up on previous NP board exams, including the definition of research, what evidence-based practice entails, and the definition of the term quality improvement.”

Then, she talks about validity vs. reliability, and gives some examples that will help you understand the difference between the two. She also reviews what NPs mean when they talk about the sensitivity vs. specificity, by using troponin and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) as good examples of tests that are high in one vs. the other.

Ashton also reviews other common NP board exam topics, such as independent vs. dependent variables, and the “levels of evidence” yielded by different research methods.

Research Methods to Know

She does a comprehensive review of the different research techniques NPs use, including:
– Meta-analysis
– Systematic reviews
– Randomized controlled trials
– Cohort studies
– Case studies
– Cross-sectional studies
– Correlations

Ashton also reviews the difference between a true experimental vs. a quasi-experimental design, explains why observational studies do not allow one to infer cause and effect, and gives you a great trick for distinguishing observational methods from other kinds of research.

If you’re taking the NP board exam and looking for something that’ll refresh your understanding of research methods, be sure to check out this video. It’s just one of many in the SMNP series we’ve made to help you get ready for exam day!

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