Implementation Research Projects: Designing and Applying Qualitative Methods

Implementation research aims to integrate research findings into practice and policy.  In order to improve the quality and effectiveness of routine practice, implementation researchers collect qualitative data about the everyday behaviors and beliefs of practitioners and other professionals, stakeholders, and recipients of services.  During data collection, researchers pay special attention to factors that both facilitate and impede how programs and service delivery are executed and implemented. The end goal is typically to increase the likelihood of uptake, adoption, implementation, and sustainability of evidence-based practices.

To provide foundational knowledge and skill to help facilitate your own work, the course first walks through critical components of building and carrying out an implementation research project:

  • Developing appropriate implementation research questions and specific aims
  • Determining when, why, and how to apply conceptual models
  • Strategizing about study design
  • Selecting appropriate, feasible qualitative data collection methods
  • Applying rapid turn-around qualitative analytic strategies
  • Generating timely, impactful research products

The course will touch on innovations in the use of qualitative methods in implementation science, including the incorporation of ethnography and community-based participatory research.

Participants will be provided with materials and bibliographies to support the practice of qualitative methods in implementation research. The course will draw on material from three resources: