Differentiating Research Utilization and Evidence Based Practice

Differentiating Research Utilization and Evidence Based Practice

            In many instances today, evidence-based practice (EBP) and research utilization (RU) – which are widespread across various fields – tends to be taken as one and the same despite several differences that they show. This paper seeks to elaborate and discuss the differences between EBP and UR that is evident across various fields.

            First, it should be noted that the chief purpose of research is to generate new knowledge and ideas as well as validate existing knowledge based on a developed theory (Bussières et al., 2016). As opposed to RU, evidence-based practice is majorly focused on using the best available evidence to make decisions pertaining a certain field. Moreover, research utilization differs from EBP in that the latter tends to rely on the amount and level of evidence available as its method of analysis while the former is mainly focused on qualitative and quantitative method of analysis to identify gaps in knowledge. 

            Additionally, the data collection method utilized in research utilization is majorly focused on the validity of information and data collected while evidence-based practice utilizes the method of search and appraisal in its data collection. This is further reflected in their impact and their immediate use. Results from RU directly impacts the overall body of knowledge by adding to it the amount of information. Conversely, EBP is a direct impact on the immediate decision that can be undertaken by the institution using the same. Moreover, the implications that comes along with EBP changes in the practices that were previously undertaken by the organization, which is disseminated through improvement of standards of practice. Conversely, the implications following RU involves understanding change that it brings, which is disseminated through scientific community result publications (Olade, 2004). 


Bussières, A. E., Al Zoubi, F., Stuber, K., French, S. D., Boruff, J., Corrigan, J., & Thomas, A. (2016). Evidence-based practice, research utilization, and knowledge translation in chiropractic: a scoping review. BMC complementary and alternative medicine16(1), 216.

Olade, R. A. (2004). Evidence‐based practice and research utilization activities among rural nurses. Journal of Nursing Scholarship36(3), 220-225.