Health Administration (HADM) 499

Research Methods in Health Services (Revision 2)

HADM 499

Revision 2 is closed, see current version

Delivery Mode: Individualized study online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Social Science

Prerequisite: Professor approval required.

Precluded Courses: HADM 499 may not be taken for credit if credit has already been obtained for HSRV 499.

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

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HADM 499 is not available for challenge.

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Professionals in health administration should have the skills and knowledge necessary to make informed decisions regarding health services. These skills include the ability to understand and interpret the research literature and the capability to conduct health services research. This senior-level course is designed to provide health professionals from a variety of backgrounds with the foundations of research methods in health services. The course covers the basics of scientific research, quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods research designs, research validity, issues of sampling and measurement, and specific approaches to health services research. Topics of research ethics, evaluation of the research literature and proposal development are introduced. This course concludes with an advanced skill in applying research methodologies through the preparation of a research proposal.

Course Objectives

  • Recognize how research can support health services administration;
  • Describe a variety of research methods used in health services administration research;
  • Evaluate literature which utilizes health services research methods;
  • Develop a research proposal for funding.


  • Unit 1: The Role of Research in Health Services
  • Unit 2: Research Planning
  • Unit 3: Quantitative Health Research
  • Unit 4: Qualitative Health Research
  • Unit 5: Sampling
  • Unit 6: Measurement
  • Unit 7: Reviewing Health Research Literature
  • Unit 8: Specific Approaches to Health Services Research
  • Unit 9: Research Ethics
  • Unit 10: Proposing and Applying Health Services Research


To receive credit for HADM 499, you must achieve a minimum grade of 50% for each individual assignment and a minimum composite course grade of “C” (60 percent). The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Activity Weighting
Quiz 1 12%
Quiz 2 12%
Quiz 3 12%
Assignment 1 24%
Assignment 2 40%
Total 100%

Three on-line quizzes cover the material in the texts and required readings. Assignment 1 is an exercise in reviewing the research literature. It is designed to have students apply what they have learned about health services research to a review of a research article from the health literature. Guiding questions are provided to help students focus on the pertinent areas of the article. Assignment 2 is an exercise in writing a research proposal. It is designed to have students apply what they have learned about health services research to create a research proposal. A suggested outline is available to help students organize the proposal. To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Shi, L. (2008). Health services research methods (2nd ed.). Albany, NY: Thomson Delmar Learning.

Fink, A. (2014). Conducting research literature reviews: from the internet to paper (4th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Locke, L. F., Spirduso, W., Silverman, S. (2014). Proposals that work: A guide for planning dissertations and grant proposals. (6th ed) Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Other Materials

All other materials will be accessed online.

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 2, August 24, 2015

View previous syllabus