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critical nursing science, critical paradigm, methodology, methods



  1. Berman, Helene RN, PhD
  2. Ford-Gilboe, Marilyn RN, PhD
  3. Campbell, Jacquelyn C. RN, PhD, FAAN


The critical paradigm is increasingly being recognized as an appropriate perspective for the development of nursing knowledge.While different research approaches including feminist, neo-Marxist, and participatory research have been described, all share the goals of empowerment, emancipation, and change. As a relatively new world-view for nursing, the concept of a critical nursing science faces much the same resistance as the interpretive paradigm did a decade ago. This article reviews the aims and assumptions of the critical paradigm; discusses the merits of combining stories and numbers for the agenda of change; and, using examples from our research, describes three strategies for combining stories and numbers in the critical paradigm.