Approaches to learning of student nurses.Nurse Educ Today. 2004 Nov; 24(8):605-14.NE
This paper presents findings from a study of student nurses' learning styles in an Institution of Higher Education in South Wales, United Kingdom (UK). The aim of the research was to evaluate students' approaches to learning as measured by a study process questionnaire (SPQ). The questionnaire is viewed as a reliable and valid measure of students' learning, and has been used extensively with students in higher education in Australia. The SPQ is a 42-item questionnaire measuring surface, deep and achieving approaches to learning. It was distributed to 300 student nurses attending the common foundation program of a preregistration-nursing course. Data were entered into SPSS Windows Release 10. The results indicated that many of the students were taking a surface approach or surface-achieving approach to their studies. There was little difference in results between undergraduates and diploma students or between students majoring in different nursing specialties. The deep and achieving approaches to learning scores correlated positively and significantly with overall mean assessment scores of students, the deep approach with Sociology scores and negatively and significantly with Psychology scores. The implications of these results are discussed in relation to curriculum design and the demands of higher education.