Involving users and carers in the assessment of preregistration nursing students' clinical nursing practice: A strategy for patient empowerment and quality improvement?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Aims and objectives
To examine (1) nursing lecturers' and (2) preregistration nursing students' perspectives of user and carer involvement in the formal assessment of preregistration nursing students' clinical practice.

Background
The involvement of service users and carers in the assessment of clinical practice in nursing education is a recent phenomenon. The Nursing and Midwifery Council Standards in the UK clearly reflect a shift in thinking from paternalistic approaches to person-centred approaches. This shift in thinking includes service user and carer involvement in student nursing assessment and there is evidence that this is being developed in several countries.

Design
Located in the interpretive paradigm, data from a two-staged, multicentre qualitative study are presented.

Methods
Interpretive analysis of semi-structured, one to one interviews with nursing lecturers (n = 15) and focus groups with nursing students (n = 51) across 11 Higher Educational Institutions.

Results
There is a strong commitment for working alongside service users and carers in the education and training of nursing students; however, involving service users and carers in formal practice assessment is identified as more challenging compared with other areas of service user/carer involvement. Service user/carers should provide feedback/review or comment, but not necessarily formal, summative ‘assessment’.

Conclusions
The evidence base for involving users and carers in assessment is limited. Involvement of users and carers in providing feedback to nursing students is welcomed. However, concerns exist about the preparedness of users and carers for formal clinical assessment.

Relevance to clinical practice
Discussion and clarification with clinical mentors and user and carer groups is necessary to understand if they agree with the policy direction of user and carer involvement in the assessment of nursing students. Quality assurance concerns are raised by students and lecturers when involving user and carer in assessing nursing students' clinical skills. Mentors are seen as key to this process, but little is known about their perspectives.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2052-2065
JournalJournal of Clinical Nursing
Volume25
Issue number13-14
Early online date2 Jun 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016

Keywords

  • assessment and feedback
  • clinical practice assessment
  • education
  • mentors
  • nursing
  • person-centred care
  • qualitative methods
  • service users and carers
  • student nurses

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