HCM&D organizes seminar for students on conducting research

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 HCM&D organizes seminar for students
on conducting research

KARACHI: Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Hamdard College of Medicine and Dentistry, Department of Community Health Sciences at HCM&D in collaboration with Pakistan Association of Medical Editors (PAME) organized a seminar on how to conduct research for fourth year medical students on February 13th 2013. This is a part of the ongoing academic activities being organized by HCM&D to promote research culture and familiarize the medical students with the art of medical writing.
Prof. Zaki Udin OnWala Dean of Faculty of Health and Medial Sciences in his welcome address referred to the seminars, workshops being organized regularly for the benefits of the medical students. Our students, he said, have been regularly participating at symposiums organized by different medical institutions in the country. We also organize an annual Research Day at the university where medical students present the findings of their research work which are judged by eminent editors and research scientists. Their feed back helps the students and faculty in overcoming some of their shortcomings thereby improving the quality of research work. This time we have organized this seminar in collaboration with Pakistan Association of Medical Editors and various facilitators will be talking about different topics.

Dr. Syed Mohammad Mubeen Vice Principal Hamdard College of Medicine
and Dentistry presenting a mementoe to Mr.Shaukat Ali Jawaid Managing
Editor Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences and Secretary General
EMAME at the Research seminar organized by HCMD for students recently.
Also seen in the picture from (L to R) are Prof. Javed, Prof. Seema Mumtaz
(Princiapl HCMD) and Prof. Zakiuddin Oonwala Dean FMHS.

Prof. Seema Mumtaz, Principal Hamdard College of Medicine and Dentistry in her presentation pointed out that while conducting research we try to find an answer to a hypothesis or a research question. The answer could also be No, which is also important in research. She then referred to various sources of knowledge, peer review process which is evidence based. Research, she further stated, can be basic, applied and practical and it can all be integrated as well.
Dr. Zubia Masood, Assistant Professor of Surgery at Hamdard College of Medicine and Dentistry talked about literature search. With the help of internet, she demonstrated how to search for various studies about a topic on which one wishes to conduct research. Literature search is important to know as to what is already known about that particular topic. Google Scholar is one of the best sources for literature search as it covers peer reviewed scientific journals and books. Medline, PubMed Central besides various other international databases in India, Iran and EMRO region were also highlighted. One should always prefer to quote studies from the country and in the region as it is important because of similar disease pattern and pathology. Key words are used to search for relevant literature. In order to ensure that only relevant articles are searched, one has to narrow down the topic and the period. Usually references to the last five years are preferred. Some times literature can also be searched with chaining technique looking at the references in a manuscript. Apart from key words, at times one can use phrases as well. One can use AMI as well as Acute Myocardial Infarction for literature search. Similarly while looking for breast cancer, one can also use words like breast tumours, breast malignancy, neoplasms, breast cancer in women etc. One can also do literature search using both American as well as British English as they have different spellings and there is a possibility that one might miss some important papers.

Hamdard College of Medicine and Dentistry, Dept. of Community Health Sciences in
collaboration with Pakistan Association of Medical Editors (PAME) organized a seminar on
research for fourth year medical students. Picture taken on this occasion shows from (L to R)
Prof. Zakiuddin Oonwala Dean FMHS presenting a mementoe to Dr. Fatema Jawad Editor-in-
Chief of JPMA. Dr. Ayesha is also seen presenting flower bouquets to other facilitators
Prof. Seema Mumtaz, Dr. Zubia Masood and Dr. Syed Mohammad Mubeen.

Mr. Shaukat Ali Jawaid Managing Editor of Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences, Secretary General of EMAME also briefly addressed the participants and said that one of the objectives of Pakistan Association of Medical Editors (PAME) was to promote the art of medical writing, medical editing and scientific publishing. Any effort made by the PAME members in this regard is most welcome. Our members in their individual capacity as well as from the PAME platform have been quite busy in such activities for the last many years. PAME has also organized two international conferences in Pakistan so far, the last one the EMMJ5 was held at CPSP Karachi in December 2010 which attracted a large number of invited guest speakers from overseas as well. Medical students, he said, were fortunate as these facilities were not available to their teachers and often one had to wait for months to get some references. However, now everything is accessible on the net which can be used while sitting a home. We have also published few books on Medical Writing which are available to those who are interested, he remarked.
Dr. Syed Mohammad Mubeen, Vice Principal at HCM&D discussed how to write references. He gave various examples of references i.e. from books, medical journals, websites etc. There are two types of Reference styles Harvard and Vancouver; the later is most commonly used. He emphasized that one should list the references in the manuscript in numbers as 1,2,3,4,5 and so on in the Vancouver style. Any reference can be repeated with the old number but otherwise all references must be in order and they should tally with the references list. While writing reference from books, one should first write the authors name followed by title of the chapter, name of the book, editors/authors, publishers name and city, country Year of publication. In case of website references, always mention the date on which the website was accessed. His presentation was followed by Hands on Exercise. The participants were given different references and they were supposed to write them correctly. Later on the correct answers were displayed to enable the students to check whether they had written the references correctly.
Dr. Fatema Jawad, Editor-in-chief, Journal of Pakistan Medical Association talked about plagiarism and how to avoid it. Plagiarisms, she said, is stealing someone else’s ideas, thoughts or work without giving the due credit. The basis of science is honesty, but to lessen the work load of a scientific research, researchers find plagiarism an easy solution to the problem. It is a scientific misconduct which is made easy today due to the convenient access to internet, journals and libraries.
Authors, Dr. Fatema Jawad further stated, plagiarize due to laziness, pressure to publish, ambitiousness and inability to write especially not having a command on the English language. People with low ethical standards always look out for a shortcut. There are various types of plagiarism which include word for word, mosaic, paraphrase, ideas, self plagiarism, salami slicing, and cyber plagiarism. Word for word plagiarism is copying and pasting without complete and proper referencing. Paraphrasing and summarizing others work, if not properly referenced also amounts to plagiarism. Copying ideas found on the web if not given proper attribution is known as cyber plagiarism.
Plagiarism can have very serious consequences for the authors which include loss of job, demotion, retraction of publication, loss of reputation and fine. The journals can take actions against authors whose articles are plagiarized by retracting the publication or may also blacklist the author for future works. Plagiarism, she said, is a crime; it is unethical and unacceptable in any form. It is the moral duty of the teachers of every institution to teach ethical research and writing to the students, she remarked.
How to write a synopsis and how to design a questionnaire was discussed by Prof. Sina Aziz, Prof. of Paediatrics at Karachi Medical and Dental College, Abbasi Shaheed Hospital who is also affiliated with JPMA. Components of synopsis, she said, include title, introduction, objectives, methods and references. The title, Prof. Sina Aziz opined, should be brief, reflect the work and pertinent to the objective of the study done. Objective is the main and most important component of any research work done. It should be measureable and achievable.
Introduction reflects the background of the study and why it is being done. Information in this section also needs to be properly referenced giving references of previous similar and relevant work. At the end of introduction the rationale should be mentioned and the objective of the study. This is followed by method which includes Setting, Duration, Sample Size, Sampling Technique, Study Design, details about inclusion and exclusion criteria, Data Collection and Data Analysis.The results and discussion are not included in the synopsis. Last section of synopsis is the reference.
Speaking about how to design a questionnaire Prof. Sina Aziz said that it should include information about name of village/institution/ family or person interviewed. Date of interview, identification at the beginning of the questionnaire, Questions must be short, simple and easily understood. Only important questions should be asked. Start the questionnaire with questions that are easy to answer and which deal with very familiar matters and leave plenty of space for the interviewer to write down the answers and to make notes of anything interesting.
The participants were encouraged to ask questions to have interactive discussion during the presentations. Dr. Mehnaz Munir Ahmad presented vote of thanks. Later all the participants were presented certificates.