Evaluation of Clinical Learning Environment in Hong Kong

Wednesday, 24 July 2013: 1:50 PM

Alisa Ka-po Wong, MNur, BN, RN
Nursing Team, The Open University of Hong Kong, Kowloon, Hong Kong

Learning Objective 1: The learner will be able to examine the differences of nursing studentsí perceptions towards the actual clinical learning environment in private hospitals and public hospitals

Learning Objective 2: The learner will be able to identify strategies to enhance the learning experience in clinical environment from students' perspectives

Purpose:  Clinical practicum is regarded as an integral part of nursing programs. It provides an opportunity for nursing students to consolidate skills and knowledge, and socialize into professional role as well as to acquire professional value. In the undergraduate nursing program of the Open University of Hong Kong(OUHK), students can have a chance to take practicum either in private or public hospitals. Undoubtedly, students have comparisons on different learning environment and there is a diverse feedback on this arrangement. This study offered a platform on assessing the clinical learning environment (CLE) that nursing students perceived so as to find ways for improvement.

Methods: Clinical Learning Environment Inventory (CLEI) was used to measure nursing students’ perceptions of the psychosocial characteristics of the CLE in the public and private hospitals in Hong Kong. Only the actual form of the tool was used in this study. The Cronbach alpha coefficients of the tool ranged from 0.73 to 0.84 and the discriminant validity value ranged between 0.39 and 0.45 for the actual form. The questionnaires were distributed to the fourth year undergraduate nursing students in OUHK. SPSS Version 17.0 was used to calculate the Independent t-test result and mean.

Results: Students who had placement in private hospital rated Task Orientation the highest. While those who were placed in public hospital rated Satisfaction as the highest. Significant results yielded in Innovation,Personalisation and Task Orientation. Students had more positive feedback on the CLE in private hospitals. It was due the relatively low staff workload;  clinical staff can spare more time to teach nursing students; nursing students can easily accommodate the clinical environment with clear illustration and protocol and the cases are relatively uncomplicated, nursing students can easily catch up and handle with the cases independently.

Conclusion: There has been a long debate about the CLE in public and private hospitals in Hong Kong. From this study, it was learnt that private settings can provide a optimal CLE as compared to public hospitals