Journal of Advanced Nursing

Cover image for Vol. 73 Issue 2

Edited By: Editor-in-Chief: Roger Watson; Editors: Robyn Gallagher, Mark Hayter, Jane Noyes, Rita Pickler & Brenda Roe

Impact Factor: 1.917

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2015: 9/114 (Nursing (Social Science)); 11/116 (Nursing (Science))

Online ISSN: 1365-2648

Empirical research - quantitative


Last updated: April 2016

Manuscripts submitted to JAN should not exceed 5000 words for the main text, including quotations but excluding the abstract, summary statement, tables and references.

Authors considering submitting a manuscript under this category are advised to consult and follow, where relevant, the STROBE guidelines for reporting observational studies.

Organising your paper:

Separate files to be created and uploaded onto ScholarOne Manuscripts:

Title page file, to include:
Your title page should include the following information:
• Full title (maximum 25 words)
• Running head
• Author details: names (please put last names in CAPITALS), job titles and affiliations (maximum of 3 per author), qualifications (maximum of 3 per author, including RN/RM where appropriate)
• Acknowledgements (if applicable)
Conflict of Interest statement
Funding Statement

In general we do not include country names in published articles and therefore encourage you to omit these from your manuscript title.

Impact Statement
We ask all authors to prepare a short statement (approximately 100 words), using bullet points if necessary, on any impact you see your paper having in terms of patients, clinical practice, education, or wider social and economic issues. This will be seen by editors and reviewers and may be used for promotional purposes.

Main file, to include:
Abstract:
250 words. Your abstract should include the following headings: Aims (of the paper), Background, Design, Methods (including dates of data collection), Results/Findings, Conclusion. The abstract should not contain abbreviations or detailed statistics. The Aim should simply state: ‘To…’
Summary Statement: See the Summary Statement guidelines.
Keywords: A maximum of 10, including nurses/midwives/nursing.
Main Text: To include the headings below and references.

Tables and figures should be uploaded separately.

The main text of your paper should include the following headings:

INTRODUCTION
Clearly identify the rationale, context, international relevance of topic.

Background
Present the scientific, conceptual or theoretical framework that guided the study, identifying and providing an overview of the conceptual model and/or theory where appropriate. Identify and define key concepts or study variables. Explain the connections between the scientific hypothesis, conceptual model or theory and the study variables. Explain connections between study variables and support those connections with relevant theoretical and empirical literature.

Provide a substantial, critical summary of relevant theoretical and empirical literature..

THE STUDY
Aim/s
State the aims of the study as a narrative study purpose, for example, ‘The aim of the study was to…’, and state the research questions or hypotheses to be tested.

Design
Identify the specific research design used: for example, descriptive, correlational, experimental, quasi-experimental, cross-sectional, longitudinal study.

Participants
Identify the sampling strategy/strategies used: random; stratified; convenience; purposive (state what purpose). For example, ‘A convenience sample of Registered Nurses was recruited’, ‘A random sample of patients was recruited…’ Identify the inclusion and exclusion criteria. For example, ‘The inclusion criteria were…’, ‘The exclusion criteria were…’ Explain how participants were recruited. Identify the size of the sample (and the population). Report the power analysis or sample size calculation, if appropriate; if not appropriate or not undertaken, provide another type of justification for the sample size.

Data collection
Use subheadings for different types of data collection techniques, if appropriate, e.g. questionnaires, assessments. For example, ‘Data were collected using a questionnaire…’, ‘Individual assessments were conducted …’. Pilot study – if done, what changes (if any) did this lead to for the main study? Identify the period of data collection (e.g. between November 2014 - June 2015); usually this should be no more than five years before submission of the manuscript.

Ethical considerations
Identify any particular ethical issues that were attached to this research. Provide a statement of ethics committee approval. Do not name the university or other institution from which ethics committee approval was obtained. State only that ethics committee approval was obtained from a university and/or whatever other organisation is relevant. Explain any other approvals obtained, for example, local site arrangements to meet research governance requirements. If, according to local regulations, no formal ethical scrutiny was required or undertaken, please state this.

Data analysis
Describe the techniques used to analyse the data, including computer software used, if appropriate. For example, ‘SPSS version X was used to analyse the data. Analysis of variance techniques were used to test the hypotheses.’ In the case that a manuscript contains statistical analyses, the guidance on the statistical aspects may be helpful.

Details on how to present statistical information in your manuscript can be found here.

Validity, reliability and rigour
Provide types of and estimates for rigour of assessments and/or the psychometric properties of quantitative instruments. If translation has been required from the original language, please explain the procedures used to maintain validity of translated tools. If tools were developed for this study, describe the processes employed, including validity and reliability testing.

RESULTS
Start with a description of characteristics of sample. For example: ‘The study participants ranged in age from X to Y years…’ Always include age (range and mean) and gender distribution.

Present results explicitly for each study aim or research question or hypothesis. Indicate whether each hypothesis was supported or rejected.

Use subheadings as appropriate.

Use figures and tables as needed, but try to limit to no more than three or four tables and one or two figures. Each figure/table should be referred to in the text, but do not repeat in the text material which is set out in tables. Rather, identify key points in text, and refer readers to tables for detail. Tables/figures should be comprehensible without reference to the text, i.e. all abbreviations should be explained; all tests used identified, with provision of appropriate values.

DISCUSSION
Discussion must be in relation to the conceptual or theoretical framework and existing literature. Do previous research findings match or differ from yours?

Draw conclusions about what new knowledge has emerged from the study. For example, this new knowledge could contribute to new conceptualisations or question existing ones; it could lead to the development of tentative/substantive theories (or even hypotheses), it could advance/question existing theories or provide methodological insights, or it could provide data that could lead to improvements in practice. What readers want to know is what your work adds to the existing topic..

Limitations
End with study limitations including but not confined to sample representativeness and/or sample size and generalizability/external validity of the results.

CONCLUSION
Provide real conclusions, not just a summary/repetition of the findings.

Draw conclusions about the adequacy of the theory in relation to the data. Indicate whether the data supported or refuted the theory. Indicate whether the conceptual model was a useful and adequate guide for the study.

Identify implications/recommendations for practice/research/education/management as appropriate, and consistent with the limitations.

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