Teaching Undergraduate Nursing Students: An Innovative Approach to Answering Clinical Questions Utilizing Current Evidence-Based Practice

Tuesday, 10 November 2015: 10:40 AM

Jene' M. Hurlbut, PhD, MSN, MS, BSN, RN, CNE
College of Nursing, Roseman University of Health Sciences, Henderson, NV, USA
Judith Carrion, EdD, MSN/Ed, MSHS, RN, RN-BC, CRRN
College of Health and Human Services, Touro University Nevada, Henderson, NV, USA

Teaching Undergraduate Nursing Students: An Innovative Approach to Answering Clinical Questions Utilizing Current Evidence Based Practice

We were challenged with the redevelopment of a 3 credit undergraduate nursing research course into a two week time frame.  This approach was supported by the University’s block curriculum based on mastery content learning.  The course redevelopment used traditional learning activities, levels of evidence based practice, and unique learning activities to teach research concepts.  A primary motivation for the re-development of this course was students past evaluations of the overall relevance of the course to “real” nursing.

The re-design of this research course enabled students to develop research skills through the generation of their own research questions based on clinical experiences.  The use of evidence based practice was taught through a systematic review process. This pedagogical approach is supported by a number of organizations and accrediting bodies that assert, professional nursing practice be grounded in research that will ultimately impact patient outcomes and ensure the delivery of safe care.

An important feature to this course included collaborative learning.  Students worked in groups to develop a unique PICO question (population, intervention, comparison, and outcomes).  This included critically appraising and synthesizing the current literature related to the PICO question.

Our strategies challenged the nursing students to apply research concepts to further explore and elucidate solutions to clinical concerns experienced in the care setting.  These innovative strategies included:  collaborative learning and group work; the generation of a unique PICO clinical question; orientation to various search strategies provided by a library expert; a student activity entitled “what is in the box”; attendance at a research center where current health related studies were in progress; a professional poster presentation, and other creative presentation methods.

Significant outcomes that supported the changes and innovative strategies used in this course, was validated in the students’ end of course evaluations.  Overall the evaluation results were very positive.  The curricular redevelopment of this course proved to be successful for undergraduate students.


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