What Can We Learn From Pilot Studies?


  • Lora Humphrey Beebe, PhD, APRN-BC, is Associate Professor, University of Tennessee College of Nursing, Knoxville, TN.

Author contact: lbeebe1@utk.edu with a copy to the Editor: mary@artwindows.com


TOPIC. This paper discusses some of the potential lessons to be learned from pilot studies, using a recently completed pilot study of exercise in outpatients with schizophrenia as a case example.

CONCLUSIONS. Pilot studies are a source of important research and clinical information in the areas of recruitment barriers, attendance at study intervention sessions, monitoring procedures, physical sensations from study interventions, and additional outcomes.

PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS. The author challenges psychiatric nurse clinicians to conduct and report the findings of pilot studies to enhance our knowledge and advance nursing science.