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Developing communication skills in nursing at Hogeschool Rotterdam

Dan Hasan
|
November 29, 2022
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DOMAIN
MEDICAL STUDIES
Class Size
~20
Instructor Workload
Learner Workload
ABOUT THE INSTITUTION
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR(S)
ABOUT THE INSTITUTION
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR(S)

Context

Targeted at students entering an HBO education from MBO*, this Professional Communication course helps to develop skills and understanding in the practice of nursing. An assignment is given each week for six weeks, whereby students work together to produce a video in which they role play a clinincal scenario demonstrating professional skills. After uploading this video, they give feedback to other groups, read the feedback they received, and write a short reflection about the process. At the end of the six weeks, students hand in their revised and finalised videos.

The intention behind using Peer Review was to promote a collaborative and open learning environment while discouraging procrastination and a “last-minute hand-in” attitude. Using this tool aimed to facilitate students’ improvement of their professional skills by providing more, and more streamlined, feedback opportunities.

*In the Netherlands, students who completed a vocational training program (MBO) can continue their education at a university of applied sciences (HBO)

Constructive alignment

Learning objectives

  • Students can use clinical reasoning to determine whether, how, and why a person needs care, discussing and justifying this verbally.

  • Students can employ theory-based conversation techniques and apply relevant skills to care-recipients.

  • Students can develop their professional skills, understanding, and identity within the nursing practice.

Learning activities

Students work in groups to record, produce, and upload a video demonstrating nursing practices through role play. Over six weeks and the same number of iterations, students assess each other’s professional and communicative skills according to a detailed 7-point scale rating criteria. As well as scoring different aspects of their peers' skills as demonstrated in the video, students leave comments to elaborate on their feedback. This iterative approach gives students the opportunity to imitate, practice, and fine-tune their performances, according to the first three levels of Dave’s psychomotor taxonomy (1), which are imitation, manipulation, and perfection.


These learning activities also address the following levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy:

  • Analyze content when giving feedback to peers.
  • Evaluate each other’s videos according to given criteria.


Assessment of learning outcomes

  • The instructor evaluates the feedback given between peers, for example checking the average scores students gave and received, the number of comments left, and the overall nature of the feedback.
  • The final evaluation of the intended learning outcomes covers the end videos created by the students, the feedback given to others, and and evaluation of the student’s efforts within the group.

Notable outcomes

  • The teacher indicated that using Peer Review helped students to develop the relevant skills together in the activity, and would recommend the tool be used again.

  • Students who performed less strongly in the video also tended to have given less useful feedback.
  • Looking at metrics such as the average number of comments per student and average time spent giving feedback, were useful indicators of performance.
  • There was initial resistance among some students towards the digital environment and cooperation but it was reported that students found the activity increasingly fun and improved in both their learning efficiency and enthusiasm.
Watching and commenting on each other’s videos through the platform helped turn students’ learning into a joint activity. - Instructor

The role of the instructor

  • The instructor explains the setup of the assignment to the students, outlining hand-in dates, deliverables and general expectations of the activity. They produce a set of scale rating criteria which define different aspects to give feedback to, along with an explanation of each aspect.
  • After students have handed in their videos and given feedback, the instructor reads and replies to (some) comments, highlighting points of interest and emphasising focus on particular feedback points.
  • Fragments from these videos are used in class to illustrate how to give constructive feedback, and as a basis to further elaborate in class on nursing practices and clinical reasoning skills.


Added value of technology

  • The giving and receiving of feedback was streamlined and accessible all within one platform, allowing students to simultaneously view their peer’s videos while referencing the feedback criteria in the sidebar.
  • The ability to add inline comments (by clicking on the timeline) enabled students to easily and clearly address specific parts of each other’s videos.

Possible variation

During the course students also had to assess themselves, but this was not done within Peer Review. For classes in the future, it could be valuable to enable self-assessment within Peer Review. With this, students can more easily compare their own comments to those of peers, giving space for deeper metacognitive reflection.

(1) - http://www.nwlink.com/~donclark/hrd/Bloom/psychomotor_domain.html

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