Methods & Meanings

Conducting Pilot and Feasibility Studies

Diane G. Cope

quantitative research, pilot study, feasibility study
ONF 2015, 42(2), 196-197. DOI: 10.1188/15.ONF.196-197

Planning a well-designed research study can be tedious and laborious work. However, this process is critical and ultimately can produce valid, reliable study findings. Designing a large-scale randomized, controlled trial (RCT)—the gold standard in quantitative research—can be even more challenging. Even the most well-planned study potentially can result in issues with research procedures and design, such as recruitment, retention, or methodology. One strategy that may facilitate sound study design is the completion of a pilot or feasibility study prior to the initiation of a larger-scale trial. This article will discuss pilot and feasibility studies, their advantages and disadvantages, and implications for oncology nursing research.

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