PUBH 4001 Evidence in Professional Reasoning (Honours)

Credit Points 10

Description In this unit, students will incorporate the evidence knowledge and skills developed from previous units into professional practice. The evidence-based practice process manages expanding and uncertain knowledge by formulating answerable questions, effectively searching literature, critically appraising evidence and applying and evaluating its significance in clinical practice and healthcare decision-making. Professional reasoning requires consideration of best available evidence, client or patient perspectives, professional expertise and practice context. Students will learn professional reasoning for shared decision-making, and safe and effective communication for patient scenarios relevant to your program. Students will study the theory and application of research methods to honours research in their chosen field, and practise the skills to analyse evidence in the health sciences.

School Health Sciences

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 2 10cp

Check your HECS Band contribution amount via the Fees page.

Level Undergraduate Level 4 subject

Pre-requisite(s) HLTH 2024

Equivalent Subjects HLTH 4002 - Evidence-based Practice (Advanced)

Incompatible Subjects HLTH 3005 - Evidence-Based Practice PUBH 3023 - Evidence in Professional Reasoning

Restrictions Students must be enrolled in 4709 Bachelor of Podiatric Medicine (Honours), 4712 Bachelor of Occupational Therapy (Honours), 4733 Bachelor of Physiotherapy (Honours) or 4764 Bachelor of Speech Pathology (Honours).

Assumed Knowledge

Foundation level knowledge and skill in research and evidence, research methods and clinical knowledge obtained in at least one clinical subject of the student’s program.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:
  1. Conduct sensitive and specific PICO search strategy to find best available evidence;
  2. Justify selection of best available evidence by suitability, strength and relevance;
  3. Evaluate clinical significance of best available evidence;
  4. Determine whether the degree of evidence justifies the clinical intervention;
  5. Incorporate evidence into professional reasoning and decision-making processes;
  6. Negotiate evidence-informed shared decision-making;
  7. Formulate an appropriate design and research protocol for investigation (in conjunction with the honours supervisor);
  8. Analyse the organisational and ethical issues of research in health practice settings, and practically apply this to the honours research topic;
  9. Justify the selection of specific data analysis techniques for use in the research question.

Subject Content

Exploring reasons for Evidence?based Practice (EBP)
- management of professional disagreement, situation effects and bias
- management of information overload
- management of information uncertainty
Appraising evidence in practice
For studies of interventions, diagnostic tests, aetiology, prognosis, and experiences
- relevance
- strength of evidence
- statistical and clinical significance
- Generalisability, Applicability and Usefulness
- Grading body of evidence
- PICO framework
Professional reasoning
- relative reasoning between evidence, expertise, patient perspectives and practice context
- limitations of EBP paradigm
- communicating evidence to clients
- evidence-informed shared decision-making
- evaluation of professional reasoning
Honours research development knowledge and skills
- transition Issues: Becoming A clinical health science Honours researcher and Understanding The Honours research training process
- Working with your supervisor and developing good research practice skills
- Scholarly writing and using library resources
- research design of Honours Projects
- ethics of research in The health sciences
- developing A written Honours research proposal
- data analysis techniques and managing data in Honours Projects


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Item Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Report 600 words plus 1 search strategy appendix 15 N Individual
Participation Participation is assessed in 4 tutorial classes 10 N Individual
Viva Voce Maximum 15 minutes 25 Y Individual
Final Exam 2 hours 25 N Individual
Proposal 2,000 words 25 N Individual

Prescribed Texts

  • Creswell, J. W. & Creswell, J.D. (2018). Research design: Qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods approaches (5th ed.). Los Angeles: Sage.
  • Hoffman, T., Bennett, S., & Del Mar, C. (2017). Evidence-based practice across the health professions (3rd ed). Sydney, New South Wales: Churchill Livingstone. (or any subsequent editions)

Teaching Periods

Structures that include subject