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This paper is the first in a series of three aimed at introducing clinicians to current concepts in research, and outlining how they may be able to apply these concepts to their own clinical practice. It has become evident in recent years that while many practitioners may not want to become actively involved in the research process, simply keeping abreast of the burgeoning publication base will create new demands on their time, and will often require the acquisition of new skills.
This series introduces the philosophies of integrating what sometimes may appear to be abstract research into the realities of the clinical environment. It will provide practitioners with an accessible summary of the tools required in order to understand the research process. For some, it is hoped this series may provide some impetus for the contemplative practitioner to become a more active participant in the research process. This first paper addresses how the evidence based practice (EBP) revolution can be used to empower the individual practitioner and how good quality evidence can improve the overall clinical decision making process. It also suggests key strategies by which the clinician may try to enhance their clinical decision making process and make research evidence more applicable to their day to day clinical practice. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 92(2): 115-122, 2002)