Instrument development and validation of a quality scale for historical research papers (QSHRP): a pilot study

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Abstract

Aim

To report a pilot study for the development and validation of an instrument to measure quality in historical research papers.

Background

There are no set criteria to assess historical papers published in nursing journals.

Design

A three phase mixed method sequential confirmatory design.

Methods

In 2012, we used a three-phase approach to item generation and content evaluation. In phase 1, we consulted nursing historians using an online survey comprising three open-ended questions and revised the items. In phase 2, we evaluated the revised items for relevance with expert historians using a 4-point Likert scale and Content Validity Index calculation. In phase 3, we conducted reliability testing of the instrument using a 3-point Likert scale.

Results

In phase 1, 121 responses were generated via the online survey and revised to 40 interrogatively phrased items. In phase 2, five items with an Item Content Validity Index score of ≥0·7 remained. In phase 3, responses from historians resulted in 100% agreement to questions 1, 2 and 4 and 89% and 78%, respectively, to questions 3 and 5.

Conclusion

Items for the QSHRP have been identified, content validated and reliability tested. This scale improves on previous scales, which over-emphasized source criticism. However, a full-scale study is needed with nursing historians to increase its robustness.

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