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Title: Exploring student nurses' first assessment experience : an illuminative evaluation
Author: Crick, Paula Jane
ISNI:       0000 0004 2694 0789
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2010
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This illuminative evaluation utilises a mixed-method design to explore the first assessment experience of first year student nurses and consider how aspects of this experience impact on their self-beliefs regarding academic ability. The study investigates the experience of a cohort of student nurses as they go through their first summative assessment of theory on their Nursing diploma course at a post-1992 University in the West Midlands of the United Kingdom. It aims to elicit, from their perspective, aspects of the assessment process that enhance their confidence and self-belief about ability, and those that serve to undermine it. The study considers whether the assessment experience differs for students with different levels of pre-entry academic qualifications, age, or history of family experience of higher education, and will examine students' conceptualisations of intelligence to ascertain if these beliefs relate to their learning behaviours or achievement. Most students believed that their intelligence could be improved with effort, utilised tutorial and peer support and believed that learning and understanding were more important than assessment. Following this assessment experience, however, there was a shift in these beliefs, with more students seeing the assessment as most important. The assessment grade received by students, peer support and tutorial support had the greatest positive, and negative, impact on student self-beliefs, with formative feedback having less impact. This cohort of students experienced a good level of achievement and a significant improvement in confidence to undergo their next assessment. Achievement was not related to pre-course academic qualifications, or to family experience of higher education, but mature students achieved better grades when compared with younger peers. This finding supports the inclusion of mature students with weaker academic backgrounds, raising questions about how to continue to include them in the nursing profession as it progresses to all graduate registration. This study highlights the need to create a learning milieu that has learning and understanding at its core, fosters effective peer support and includes students far more in the assessment process, supporting development of the positive self-beliefs, confidence and self· reliance essential to their academic and professional development.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ed.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available