Surveys are one of the most used research designs. The results of survey studies can add context around a topic, quantify the extent of an issue or suggest future research questions [1,2] However, if done poorly, with little rigour, they offer little insight, can be misleading and simply burden research participants unnecessrily [2]. On top if that, poorly performed survey studies provide less rigorous and often biased results, the conclusions of which can be questioned. These studies can be considered research waste [3] and should not be supported. Surveys are popular amongst healthcare professionals. In this journal alone, many submitted research papers use a surveys design. Unfortunately, many of these submitted manuscripts face a desk rejection or are rejected by the reviewers with the overall argument that the design, methods and reporting of the survey study was inadequate. It is important to be clear in the wording. A survey is the research design of the study, and a questionnaire is the instrument used to conduct the survey study and to collect data. Survey studies are most commonly cross-sectional, conducted at one point in time, but can be done longitudinally, where surveys are administered over a period of time [1,4]. In this editorial, we have developed a simple mnemonic - SURVEY - to guide and remind clinicians and researchers about the key issues to consider when undertaking and reporting surveys studies.



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Nursing in Critical Care



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School of Nursing and Midwifery