Comparing the Effects of Objective Structured Assessment of Technical Skills (OSATS) and Traditional Method on Learning of Students

Authors

1 1Department of Nursing and Midwifery, Gonabad University of Medical Sciences, Gonabad, IR Iran

2 2Social Determinant of Health Center Research, Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery, Gonabad University of Medical Sciences, Gonabad, IR Iran

3 3Department of Health, School of Public Health, Social Determinant of Health Research Center, Gonabad University of Medical Sciences, Gonabad, IR Iran

4 4Department of Community and Mental Health Nursing, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Maragheh Faculty of Medical Sciences, Maragheh, IR Iran

Abstract

Background Despite the benefits of the objective structured assessment of technical skills (OSATS) and it appropriateness for evaluating clinical abilities of nursing students , few studies are available on the application of this method in nursing education. Objectives The purpose of this study was to compare the effect of using OSATS and traditional methods on the students’ learning. We also aimed to signify students’ views about these two methods and their views about the scores they received in these methods in a medical emergency course. Patients and Methods A quasi-experimental study was performed on 45 first semester students in nursing and medical emergencies passing a course on fundamentals of practice. The students were selected by a census method and evaluated by both the OSATS and traditional methods. Data collection was performed using checklists prepared based on the ‘text book of nursing procedures checklists’ published by Iranian nursing organization and a questionnaire containing learning rate and students’ estimation of their received scores. Descriptive statistics as well as paired t-test and independent samples t-test were used in data analysis. Results The mean of students’ score in OSATS was significantly higher than their mean score in traditional method (P = 0.01). Moreover, the mean of self-evaluation score after the traditional method was relatively the same as the score the students received in the exam. However, the mean of self-evaluation score after the OSATS was relatively lower than the scores the students received in the OSATS exam. Most students believed that OSATS can evaluate a wide range of students’ knowledge and skills compared to traditional method. Conclusions Results of this study indicated the better effect of OSATS on learning and its relative superiority in precise assessment of clinical skills compared with the traditional evaluation method. Therefore, we recommend using this method in evaluation of students in practical courses.

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