Research awareness: putting evidence into practice

Becoming research aware is the first stage to becoming more involved in research. It can involve keeping up to date with new research and guidelines, talking about research with colleagues, implementing new research into practice, and auditing and evaluating changes to clinical practice.

Open an Athens account

Many journals, databases and other resources can be freely accessed through your hospital library or online via an Open Athens account.

Contact your hospital library for more information or sign up for an Open Athens account.

Sign up for NIHR Learn

NIHR Learn is a free online learning platform that allows NHS professionals to enrol on a variety of online and face-to-face research training courses.

Keep up to date with published evidence

It can be time consuming to keep up to date with all the research that is happening in Audiology. Some tips to help keep up to date:

  • Sign up for an account on BMJ Best Practice to access summaries of the most up to date evidence on a wide range of topics. NHS professionals can access for free.
  • Use the Trip database to search for high-quality research evidence to support clinical practice and/or care. You can sign up for free email alerts on evidence of interest
  • Check the monthly contents page of the International Journal of Audiology, which is jointly owned by BSA [link to IJA]
  • Sign up for alerts on specific areas of interest on medical databases, such as Web of Science.

Join an online journal club or start your own

A good way to engage with research and to promote a research culture in your department is to join or set up a journal club, and add an agenda item of “evidence update” to your regular team meetings.

Manchester Centre for Audiology and Deafness run an online journal club for Audiologists.

You could set up your own journal club. Talk to your hospital library to see how they can help, and follow these tips.

Listen to the presentation in Online learning on ‘Why and how to run a journal club’.

Find out what Audiology research is happening in the UK

A number of universities and research institutions have active research projects on audiology, hearing and balance disorders, ENT and related topics. They often publish details of their current projects and research vacancies on their websites. They may run research seminars and journal clubs which are open to visitors and other research events.

Apologies if we have left any departments or groups off the list. Please email us if your organisation or network would like to be added to the list.

Learn more about how to practice evidence-based healthcare

Evidence-based healthcare (EBHC) is an approach to medical practice and decision-making that emphasizes the integration of the best available scientific evidence with clinical expertise and consideration of patient values and preferences.

EBHC acknowledges that medical and Audiology knowledge is continually evolving, and it places a strong emphasis on critical appraisal of research literature to ensure that Audiology interventions and practices are based on rigorous scientific evidence. It also involves clear communication between Audiology providers and patients to make informed decisions that align with the patient’s values and preferences.

Find out more on how to develop your EBHC knowledge and skills.

Get involved in public and professional consultations

Occasionally organisations such as NICE, BAA, or BSA release provisional guidance updates for public consultation. This involves the review of procedural or clinical guidance based on the best available evidence.

Consultation provides an opportunity for clinical experts to provide insight and feedback on the draft guidance updates enabling clinicians and the public to offer comments, suggestions, or raise evidence that has not been considered in the draft process. Whilst this may not be directly contributing to primary research, it supports in evidence-based practice and involvement in the translation of research into clinical practice across the profession.

Recent examples have included the NICE Guideline NG155 Tinnitus assessment and management, NICE Technology appraisal guidance TA566 Cochlear implants for children and adults with severe to profound deafness, and BAA Uncertainty of Measurement in Audiology.

NICE guideline NG98 Hearing loss in adults assessment and management also highlighted the need for additional research in the best follow up strategy for new hearing aid users and resulted in the availability of targeted NIHR funding, which led to the successful funding of the FAMOUS trial.

Get involved in audits and service evaluations

Audits and service evaluations form part of delivering evidence based healthcare.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) have produced guidance and resources to support with clinical audit and service development.

The NHS Evaluation Toolkit can help you get started with service evaluation.

Become a BSA member

  • Supporting you in your professional development
  • Helping you stay up to date with advancements in audiology
  • Stand out from the crowd