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The literature suggests that nurses may be failing to achieve research-based practice A range of reasons why nurses fail to use research findings in practice has been highlighted in previous studies The overall aim of this study was to identify the self-perceived research skills needs of trained nurses with the view to organizing workshops to meet these needs Six hundred trained nurses in six different health authorities were surveyed using self-administered questionnaires These nurses worked in clinical areas, in hospitals, the community and education The results indicated that 93% (n = 398) of nurses were not satisfied with their research skills Other factors emerging indicated the self-perceived skills deficit were those of an elementary nature, including locating research reports, reading and evaluating reports and application of results to practice, amongst others This may be an indication of why research-based practice is still not a reality