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Develop your question

Your research question is at the core of your project and it's important that you spend time and effort planning your research and formulating a strong hypothesis. Here are some steps to take:

  • Ensure that your idea is original.
  • Assess the potential value/benefit of exploring your research question.
  • Conduct a literature review so you can leverage past research findings where possible.
  • Consider the best methodology for examining your question, including data you can access.
  • Access valuable consultation resources available at your research site and/or university, such as strategic research planning, research design and Information Technology consultation services.
  • Connect with lead researchers in your area of study and ask for their feedback on your research question.

Helpful links

Research resources – UBC Department of Family Practice Research Office
Framework for Research: Guidelines for process – Fraser Health
Understanding research study designs – University of Minnesota
The PICO Model (for developing a literature search strategy and clinical question development) – Fraser Health
What is research design? (for social sciences research) – New York University

Literature review resources


PHSA provides access to a large collection of online health library resources through membership in the Electronic Health Library of BC consortium. Visit our Library & Education Resources page for more information.

Other library resources

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