Integrating EBP as a Normative Behavior in Nursing Student Clinical Experience: A Unique Teaching Strategy in “Psych Boot Camp”

Wednesday, 15 July 2009: 11:05 AM

Kathleen H. Thelian
Division of Nursing, Molloy College, Rockville Centre, NY

Learning Objective 1: 1. Apply techniques in clinical teaching that help students improve their abilities to speak before peers and staff with confidence related to evidence based practice.

Learning Objective 2: 2. Promote staff-student relationships using library and available hospital resources around pragmatic “case” discussions based on referenced articles and evidence.

Purpose. The purpose of this project to impact on nursing education was twofold: (a) to foster integration of evidence based practice (EBP) a normative behavior for senior nursing students in a brief acute inpatient psychiatric experience; and (b) to develop real-time information acquisition skills by using onsite library resources and collegial dialogue related to the synthesis of evidence to support practice. This is accomplished by requiring students to select research articles that focus on observed clinical questions as part of a project to compile and develop a resource manual of global EBP abstracts that they present to the staff orally.
Theoretical Framework. Adult learning and Vgotsky’s developmental theories of cognitive development serve this study as students engage in learning through an iterative approach of social exchange and dialogue with the librarians and staff while serving a practical need for staff development.
Method. Over 200 students in groups of 8 have participated in this project. The experience is limited to a 3-day intensive learning experience on the units, referred to as “psych boot camp.” In addition to their inpatient clinical days, each group develops a collection of globally based abstracts and articles related to a particular observation. Each student engages the librarian to learn search strategies that result in EBP answers to clinical questions. They present their findings to engage staff in social learning and professionalization.
Evaluation. Each group is evaluated by the professor and students self-evaluate. The recent student group (n=48) responded to an online survey (return rate = 58%). Comments from students have been overwhelmingly positive (61 – 85% reported their satisfaction and learning; 71% reported plans to continue using real-time research after graduation). A follow-up survey on staff (n=9) yielded evidence that staff have (a) benefited from the students’ EBP presentations (57%); and (b) were satisfied with the student experience (100%).