Formal Quantitative Article Critique

Critique of Kupcewicz, Szypulska, and Doboszyńska’s Study’s “Positive Orientation as a Predictor of Health Behavior during Chronic Diseases”


The title of the report was short and clearly conveyed the key variables the study intends to test. Additionally, the title identifies the study population by giving an idea into the study population; from the title, it is easy to deduce that the study targets a population with chronic illnesses. 


The abstract is written succinctly and clearly summarizes the main features of the report. In particular, the abstract presents the problem through the purpose of the study. The abstract briefly describes the method and the number of participants involved in the study – 93 patients including 47 males and 46 females. Additionally, the abstract presented a brief summary of the results, which indicated that the two variables of age and positive orientation were associated with overall health behavior. In conclusion, the abstract summed up the results of the research, which indicated a need to implement preventive programs with a positive orientation to influence health behavior during chronic illness.

Introduction: Statement of the Problem

The article combined the literature review with the introduction. Although the introduction is labeled, it takes on the format of a literature review highlighting previous studies on healthy behaviors for people with chronic illnesses. Beyond that, the introduction does not explicitly state the problem and it is up to the reader to determine the problem statement. Nonetheless, the authors present a persuasive argument on the significance of the new study and thus, setting the stage for the new study. Focusing on significance, the study is significant to the nursing practice in that, it provides a method to modify patients with chronic illness behavior and improve their quality of life, which is one of the responsibilities of nurses. Consequently, considering the problem is based on determining whether positive optimism influences health behavior, the paradigms and methods used match the research problem.

Hypotheses or Research Questions

The study explicitly states and appropriately words the research questions and the hypotheses. The study clearly identifies the key variables – independent variable identified as positive orientation and dependent variable identified as health behaviors during chronic illness. Consequently, the hypotheses and research questions are consistent with the literature review in that they sought to examine predictors of health behavior, as a way of adding to existing research.

Literature Review

The literature review is mainly based on primary sources – print books and peer-reviewed journal articles. However, most of the sources are not up to date considering the article was published in 2019 and some sources date back more than 10 years. Consequently, the literature review interprets individual studies within the context of the study problem to provide a rigorous and clear overview of the current health behaviors and influencers of healthy behaviors during chronic illness. The literature review also provides a sound basis for the new study by highlighting what the existing studies have found about the problem such as current health behaviors practiced by chronic illness patients. For instance, the review identified that chronic illness patients who engaged in healthy behavior had an improved quality of life. The study also found that personal resources, identified as positive orientation contributed significantly to chronic illness patients engaging in healthy behaviors.

Conceptual/ Theoretical Framework

The study did not have a conceptual or theoretical framework. Ideally, a conceptual/theoretical framework represents the synthesis of the literature with a phenomenon that the research is attempting to explain. It outlines the actions required building upon existing knowledge from other researcher’s point of view and the researcher’s perspective on the study. Consistently, although a theoretical/conceptual framework is critically important in a research paper, it could be limiting to the researcher and the research may be vulnerable to the way the theoretical/conceptual framework is defined.

Method: Protection of Human Rights

The study was conducted consistent with the principles outlined in the Helsinki Declaration. The researchers obtained permission to research the Research Ethics Committee at the University of Warmia and Mazury. The subject sampling was justified. Additionally, the researchers protected the rights of the participants by seeking written consent from patients before participating in the study. The study was designed to minimize the risks and increase the benefits by informing the patients about their right to withdraw from the study at any time without specifying their reasons. Additionally, before the study, participants were informed about the aim of the survey.

Research Design

The study was quantitative research and used the quasi-experimental design research method, which sought to study whether positive orientation was an important predictor of behavior in patients with chronic illnesses. The study tested the research hypotheses using multiple regressions to estimate the quantitative relations of several independent variables and dependent variables. The data collection points collected were appropriate and to minimize bias, the researchers ensured transparency in the design of research, data collection, and reporting of study results. The researchers reported the data collected without fabricating data or eliminating data that does not support the hypotheses, as well as through multiple testing. 

Population and Sample

The population was described in sufficient detail. According to Kupcewicz, Szypulska, Doboszyńska (2019), the study participants included patients hospitalized in the University Clinic in Ozlsztyn (Poland) from the Clinical Department of Neurological and Day Care Rehabilitation Ward. A total of 104 patients were recruited to participate in the study but 11 were eliminated after their questionnaires were found incomplete. However, the researchers do not specify how the population was recruited. Consequently, the researchers did not conduct a power analysis to determine the sample size needs. 

Data Collection and Measurement

The researchers used a questionnaire to collect data from all the 104 participants who were initially recruited to participate in the study. The conceptual and operational definitions were congruent in that the researchers explained the concept of health behaviors during chronic illness and ways to measure the influencers. Additionally, the researchers explained the specific instruments used to collect data – questionnaires and data collection methods reliability and validity were enhanced through the data collection method used.


The section on the procedure contains comprehensive information on data collection. The section starts by describing the method of study and highlights the study respected the rights of the participants. After the participants handed over a written consent, they were presented with a questionnaire, which was later submitted after two days. Apart from the questionnaire, the participants also received two standardized research tools – the Positive Scale Guideline and the Health Care Inventory. The researchers were available to aid the participants who found it difficult to fill in the questionnaire. The majority of the participants who received the questionnaires and the other two standardized research tools completed the survey. 

Results: Data Analyses

The researchers provided a short but detailed report on the statistical analysis used. For instance, according to Kupcewicz et al. (2019), some of the statistical tools used in the analyses include t-test for independent samples and the r-Pearson correlation parameter. The researchers performed a nonparametric Kolmogorov-Smirnov test to determine the normal distribution of variables. A Sten score was used to determine the overall rate of positive orientation and healthy behaviors. The chi-square test was applied to analyze the distribution of research results for the study participants. The researchers used multiple regressions to estimate the quantitative relationship between several independent and dependent variables. 


The findings section goes straight to report the results of the study and begins by highlighting the mean score of overall healthy behaviors. The researchers used tables, figures, and graphs to present the study result. The results were presented in a way that provided sufficient information needed for an EBP. For instance, the researchers identified the strength of the correlation between various variables, which provide valuable and sufficient information to EBP implementers on the appropriate method to adopt.

Discussion: Interpretation of the Findings

Kupcewicz et al. (2019) interpreted and discussed their findings within the context of previous research. The discussion carefully intertwined the findings from the research with previous research by highlighting areas the present research complemented existing research reviewed in the literature review. Additionally, the discussion highlighted areas in which, the current study enhanced or improved existing research. The researchers also apply the study findings to a large population of chronic illness patients. The interpretations are well-founded drawing upon existing literature and relating their results to the current results.

Implications/ Recommendations

The researchers discuss the implication of the study and highlight that the study confirms that the implementation of modifications to healthy behaviors should take into consideration various behavior and health determinants. They also recommend the importance of enriching the rehabilitation program for chronically ill patients to enhance the development of psychological resources, as well as positive orientation.

Global Issues


The report was clearly written and well organized in a way that makes the findings accessible to practicing nurses. The use of tables, figures, and graphs provide the reader with concrete information about the study results. 

Researcher Credibility

The researchers’ clinical, substantive, or methodologic qualifications and experience do not enhance the confidence of the findings and interpretation because confidence interval is what determines the confidence of findings.

Summary Assessment

Despite any limitations, the study findings appear valid based on the research design, data collection methods, and statistical analyses used. The study also contributes to the nursing practice in that it informs nurses of some of the influencers to healthy behavior for patients with chronic illness.


Kupcewicz, E., Szypulska, A., & Doboszyńska, A. (2019). Positive Orientation as a Predictor of Health Behavior during Chronic Diseases. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16(18). doi:10.3390/ijerph16183408.

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