Strategies for overcoming language barriers in research

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Aim: This paper seeks to describe best practices for conducting cross-language research with individuals who have a language barrier. Design: Discussion paper. Data Sources: Research methods papers addressing cross-language research issues published between 2000–2017. Implications for Nursing: Rigorous cross-language research involves the appropriate use of interpreters during the research process, systematic planning for how to address the language barrier between participant and researcher and the use of reliably and validly translated survey instruments (when applicable). Biases rooted in those who enter data into “big data” systems may influence data quality and analytic approaches in large observational studies focused on linking patient language preference to health outcomes. Conclusion: Cross-language research methods can help ensure that those individuals with language barriers have their voices contributing to the evidence informing healthcare practice and policies that shape health services implementation and financing. Understanding the inherent conscious and unconscious biases of those conducting research with this population and how this may emerge in research studies is also an important part of producing rigorous, reliable, and valid cross-language research. Impact: This study synthesized methodological recommendations for cross-language research studies with the goal to improve the quality of future research and expand the evidence-base for clinical practice. Clear methodological recommendations were generated that can improve research rigor and quality of cross-language qualitative and quantitative studies. The recommendations generated here have the potential to have an impact on the health and well-being of migrants around the world.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Advanced Nursing
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

Keywords

  • asylum seeker
  • immigrants
  • language barrier
  • methods
  • nurses
  • nursing
  • refugee
  • translations
  • undocumented immigrants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)

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