“All scientific work is incomplete, whether it be observational or experimental. All scientific work is liable to be upset or modified by advancing knowledge. That does not confer upon us a freedom to ignore the knowledge we already have, or to postpone the action that it appears to demand at a given time. Who knows, asked Robert Browning, but the world may end tonight? True, but on available evidence most of us make ready to commute on 8:30 the next day.” Sir Austin Bradford Hill, as quoted in his landmark 1965 paper on causation.
I dated a piano major in college and I tried, with very limited success, to learn how to play the piano myself. She told me, “If you’re going to make a mistake, make a loud mistake.” You don’t want to play the piano nervously and hesitantly. The same is true in research. Continue reading
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A detailed and comprehensive list of things to look for when you are reviewing a new questionnaire. It is based on a document QAS-99 that was originally developed by the cancer.gov, but the original link is no longer active. Continue reading
The acronym SMART is a nice way to define an objective in a quality improvement. It has to be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound. This page outlines what each of these terms means and why they are important. It also provides examples of objectives that meet the SMART criteria. Continue reading
This page offers a broad and comprehensive overview of how to plan and conduct a program evaluation. There are tons of resources (a mix of html pages and PDF documents) behind various hyperlinks on this page. Continue reading
This page reviews the commonly used acronym DOWNTIME that classifies the eight ways that waste can occur in a manufacturing process. Continue reading
This blog post provides a few short paragraphs elaborating on each of W. Edward Deming’s Fourteen Points. There’s a bit of self-promotion on this page, but the overall content is still quite good. Continue reading
This is a slick video that outlines the quality improvement process using clever drawings. It is only 11 minutes long but provides a very nice overview. Continue reading
This 4 minute video talks about the discovery of the ozone hole over Antarctica and how some early indications of this hole were dismissed as outliers. Continue reading