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Quality assessment of student performance in the real world: A case of the holy grail


Dr. Robyn Nash, Faculty of Health, QUT. Ms Pam Lemcke, School of Nursing, QUT ... Robyn Nash. Assistant Dean-Teaching and Learning. Faculty of Health, QUT. r. ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Quality assessment of student performance in the real world: A case of the holy grail

Quality assessment of student performance in the
real world A case of the holy grail?
  • Dr. Robyn Nash, Faculty of Health, QUT
  • Ms Pam Lemcke, School of Nursing, QUT
  • Dr. Sandy Sacre, Faculty of Health, QUT
  • ACEN-WACE Asia Pacific Conference
  • Manly, Sydney 30 Sept 3 Oct 2008

The School of Nursing, QUT
  • QUT is one of Australias largest universities
    enrolling 40,000 students
  • The School of Nursing offers a comprehensive
    range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses
  • We have approx. 2,300 UG students across 4
    undergraduate degrees
  • We manage approx. 3,500 nursing WIL placements
    per year

WIL context ..
  • clinical placement begins in Sem 2/Year 1
    culminates with an 8-week practicum in Sem 2/Year
  • placements are generally undertaken in block
    arrangements of x number of weeks and occur
    during/before/after semester
  • students are placed in a wide variety of
    different settings from acute hospitals
    community mental health services, aged care
    facilities rural health settings

WIL context
  • students provide direct patient care in
    accordance with their level in the course
  • supervision (formal) provided by clinical
    facilitators employed through sessional/seconded
    arrangements (18 basis)
  • informal supervision by RN buddies
  • students performance assessed both formatively
    and summatively during every practicum
  • must meet specified performance criteria to pass
    the prac
  • performance appraisal tools consistent with
    National Competency Standards

Assessment of clinical performance
  • early methods relied on discrete observation of
    students using specific clinical assessment tools
  • ? emphasis on competence
  • integration of knowledge, attitudes and skill
    within the performance
  • more recent methods include continuous
    observation, (competency-based) assessment tools
    and reflection on practice

Assessment of Clinical Performance
  • Expectations and clinical competence
  • Novice tell me, show me ?
  • Advanced Beginner think I can ?
  • Competent I can cope ?
  • Proficient a bigger picture emerges ?
  • Expert intuitive understanding
  • Benner, 1984 (based on Dreyfus Model of Skill

E x p e r i e n c e
Assessment of Clinical Performance
  • Some general principles
  • cognitive, psychomotor affective learning
  • valid and reliable
  • fair
  • unambiguous understanding by students and
    assessors of expectations standards

Complexities of the WIL Environment
  • Academics
  • positive learning environments
  • students supported to consolidate knowledge and
  • Employers
  • service provision and staff workloads
  • staffing profiles
  • work ready graduates
  • Students
  • they want us there staff are friendly,
    positive, supportive
  • they know what were doing
  • we can practice what were learning
  • theyll give us good feedback that helps us to
  • Clinical staff
  • timely information about what, who, when etc.
  • but what can the students do?
  • We never get a break from students!
  • I havent got time.
  • Just give us a skills list!

Assessment of Clinical Performance
  • Some general issues
  • Academic Vs clinical/real world perspectives
  • Competence Vs checklist assessments
  • Realistic expectations of students performance
  • Experience and confidence of assessors
  • Impact of context
  • Feedback on progress - formative Vs summative
  • University context expectations, policies,
    procedures etc.

Assessment of Clinical Performance
  • Some issues (Assessors)
  • Why is this student here? She/he cant do X
  • Its not relevant/not applicable here
  • She/he can pass they will get better with more
  • This student should fail she/he did X today
  • Low performing students it takes too much time
    and its not fair to other students

Assessment of Clinical Performance
  • Some issues (students)
  • my assessment wasnt fair.
  • the ward staff said I was OK. Why did the
    facilitator fail me?
  • the facilitator never really sees what I do how
    can they assess me?
  • they expect too much Im not an RN yet!
  • but what have I learned?

Working off the same assessment page
  • Clinical Assessment Tools and Guidelines
  • specific performance criteria aligned to
    unit/course expectations
  • performance assessed as achieving/not achieving
    (formative) and satisfactory/unsatisfactory
  • Observation (including dialogue) on multiple
  • Anecdotal Notes
  • Learning Contracts

Reflections ..and the way forward?
  • Bilateral relationships built on genuine respect
    and understanding of each others context
  • Sense of local ownership at the coalface
  • Student preparation for learning in the workplace
  • Ongoing development of key staff
  • User-friendly assessment tools that fit the
    academic/professional purpose
  • Support in the workplace
  • onsite academic liaison
  • ready access to just-in-time resources
  • Continued commitment to finding win-win

I think we learn faster and better when we have
more good people with good knowledge who can show
us and tell us how were going
Thank YouQuestions? Comments?
  • Robyn Nash
  • Assistant Dean-Teaching and Learning
  • Faculty of Health, QUT
  • r.nash_at_qut.edu.au
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