General Course Information for RTT 440: Research in Radiation Therapy

Course: RTT 440 - Research in Radiation Therapy
Textbook: For the correct edition of the textbook assigned to a specific class, go to:

Course Prerequisite(s):


Course Description:

This course will address reading and conducting research in radiation therapy. Research approaches and procedures will be explored. Examples of various research methods and techniques will be discussed.

Course Learning Outcomes:
  • Describe six different types of research methodologies and when they would be appropriate for use.
  • Describe the basic components involved in the research process including formulating 'good' research questions.
  • Explain what is meant by the term 'variable' and name at least five variables that might be investigated by radiation therapists.
  • Explain what a hypothesis is and formulate at least two hypotheses that could be investigated by radiation therapists.
  • Discuss concepts related to ethical research and procedures to maintain participant confidentiality.
  • Explain the purpose and value of a literature review and write a summary.
  • Differentiate between primary and secondary sources.
  • Conduct a literature search of the literature on a topic in radiation therapy.
  • Differentiate between sample and population, different sampling methods and how to obtain a random sample from a given population.
  • Discuss research generalizability.
  • Describe various methods and quality and quantity of data collection.
  • Critique various research instruments to determine objectivity.
  • Discuss validity and reliability.
  • Describe errors of measurement.
  • Differentiate between descriptive statistics and inferential statistics.
  • Differentiate between Qualitative and Quantative research.
  • Develop a survey instrument.
  • Critique a variety of research studies and discuss each section.
  • Understand the components of developing a research proposal.

Students with Disabilities:
Students seeking special accommodations due to a disability must submit an application with supporting documentation, as explained under this subject heading in the General Catalog. Instructors are required to provide such accommodations if they receive written notification from the University.

Writing Across the Curriculum:
Students are expected to demonstrate writing skills in describing, analyzing and evaluating ideas and experiences. Written reports and research papers must follow specific standards regarding citations of an author's work within the text and references at the end of the paper. Students are encouraged to use the services of the University's Writing Center when preparing materials.

The following website provides information on APA, MLA, and other writing and citation styles that may be required for term papers and the like:

National University Library:
National University Library supports academic rigor and student academic success by providing access to scholarly books and journals both electronically and in hard copy. Print materials may be accessed at the Library in San Diego or through document delivery for online and regional students. Librarians are available to provide training, reference assistance, and mentoring at the San Diego Library and virtually for online or regional students. Please take advantage of Library resources:


Contact the Library:

  • (858) 541-7900 (direct line)
  • 1-866-NU ACCESS x7900 (toll free)

Use the Library Training Tools (on the Library Homepage) for additional help

  • Recorded class presentations
  • Tutorials & Guides (APA/MLA, Peer-Review, and more)

Plagiarism is the presentation of someone else's ideas or work as one's own. Students must give credit for any information that is not either the result of original research or common knowledge. If a student borrows ideas or information from another author, he/she must acknowledge the author in the body of the text and on the reference page. Students found plagiarizing are subject to the penalties outlined in the Policies and Procedures section of the University Catalog, which may include a failing grade for the work in question or for the entire course. The following is one of many websites that provide helpful information concerning plagiarism for both students and faculty:

Ethical behavior in the classroom is required of every student. The course will identify ethical policies and practices relevant to course topics.

Students are expected to be competent in using current technology appropriate for this discipline. Such technology may include word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation software. Use of the internet and e-mail may also be required.

Learning to work with and value diversity is essential in every class. Students are expected to exhibit an appreciation for multinational and gender diversity in the classroom.

As a diverse community of learners, students must strive to work together in a setting of civility, tolerance, and respect for each other and for the instructor. Rules of classroom behavior (which apply to online as well as onsite courses) include but are not limited to the following:

  • Conflicting opinions among members of a class are to be respected and responded to in a professional manner.
  • Side conversations or other distracting behaviors are not to be engaged in during lectures, class discussions or presentations
  • There are to be no offensive comments, language, or gestures