What Constitutes Science in Educational Research? Applying Rigor in Our Research Approaches

What constitutes science in educational research? This question is not as straightforward to answer given the diversity of disciplines represented in health professions education. As researchers, we engage in scientific study to advance our field; we are also an applied field, with goals to produce knowledge that can translate into practice and change. Our field has roots in multiple disciplines, including education, psychology, sociology, biomedical and clinical sciences as well as in emerging areas, such as data science and linguistic dynamics. As such, the specific elements that define science and principles of scientific inquiry may vary.2 And yet, we can agree that the quality of science generated from a study stems, in part, from the type and relevance of questions asked and how the answers are derived.
Park YS, Zaidi Z, Obrien B. (2020) What constitutes best science in educational research? Applying rigor in our research approaches. Acad. Medicine. Volume Publish Ahead of Print. doi: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000003636