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Nursing Students’ Clinical Learning Environment in Norwegian Nursing Homes: Lack of Innovative Teaching and Learning Strategies

DOI: 10.4236/ojn.2017.78070, PP. 949-961

Keywords: Nursing Students, Nursing Homes, Care for Old Persons, Residential Care, Clinical Learning Environment

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Abstract:

Background: Nursing students hesitate to choose aged care as a career, and the aged care sectors are on an edge regarding nursing positions. Clinical learning environments may influence nursing students’ career choices. Few studies have explored learning environments in nursing homes, although students increasingly have placements there. Objectives: The aim was to produce information for developing nursing students’ learning opportunities in nursing homes. Design: A cross-sectional survey design was used. Settings: The study was conducted at a university college in southeast Norway. Participants: Students in two cohorts of a bachelor degree program in nursing participated, N = 499. Methods: Data were collected on nursing students’ perceptions of clinical learning environments during placements in five nursing homes. A 42-item validated questionnaire with the subscales personalization, individualization, involvement, task orientation, innovation, and satisfaction was used. Data analysis used descriptive statistics, t-tests, and linear regression analysis. Results: Total scores showed overall satisfaction with clinical learning environments in nursing homes. However, innovation subscale scores were very low. First year students had significantly higher scores than third year students on the total scale, and most subscales. Age was significantly associated with total scale scores and subscale satisfaction scores. Higher education and work experience before entering nursing education were significantly associated with involvement subscale scores. Conclusions: Students are more positive than negative about their clinical learning environments. Low valuation of innovation seems to be a consistent finding in studies in both nursing homes and hospitals internationally. For innovative learning strategies to function they must be anchored at the organizational level. Future research should develop and test more innovative learning strategies for nursing students.

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