Quality education and training should enable nursing students to master the theoretical and clinical component of a programme, clinical education (practica) forms a vital part of the curriculum of nursing programmes. Clinical education takes place in a Clinical Learning Environment (CLE) where the nurse educator monitors the needs of both the patient and students. Nursing students are provided with an opportunity to combine cognitive, psychomotor, and affective skills within this environment. A supportive CLE is important for first year nursing students for successful teaching and learning. Many nursing students view the CLE as anxiety and stress provoking; they feel vulnerable in the CLE as most activities are unplanned in relation to the classroom activities.
In order to make the most of the first year students? clinical learning experience, the overall aim of this study was to by means of an Appreciative Inquiry (AI), evaluate the clinical learning environment they are placed in to rotate as part of their clinical component of the training programme.
In this study a qualitative and descriptive design has been utilised. Nursing students in their first year reflected on their clinical experience and provided inputs regarding the CLE as part of their learning in comprehensive four-year programme. Data was collected by means of self-reported interview schedules which were distributed to the nursing students where they reflected their inputs regarding their experiences in the CLE. Data was collected using the four phases of AI, in the discovery phase the first year nursing students had the opportunity to reflect and (e)valuate the best of what is within the CLE. During the dream phase the first year nursing students had the opportunity to dream and envision what could be the ideal CLE for them to rotate through and work in, to gain knowledge and the required skills. During the design phase the first year nursing student had the opportunity to give inputs and make recommendations towards designing what should be the ideal CLE. During the delivery phase the researcher had the opportunity to present the recommendations to the involved stakeholders
Recommendations were compiled based on the findings of the study, to enhance the clinical learning environment for first year nursing students and work towards educational excellence in this unique CLE.
Dissertation (MCur)--University of Pretoria, 2016.