Document Type : Original Article
Nursing and Midwifery Care Research Center, Department of Operating Room, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran
Background: University education has been held virtually during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, students were confused and anxious while attending college, both because they were exposed to a new environment and fearful of coronavirus infection.
Objectives: The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of a 360° virtual tour of the college physical environment on the anxiety of newly arrived students during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Methods: This single-blind, randomized, controlled trial was conducted between January and February 2021, with 80 nursing, midwifery, and surgical technology students from the Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran. Students were randomly allocated into an intervention group and a control group, each with 40 students. Students in the intervention group received a 360° virtual tour of the college physical environment to be familiarized with the college environment. Students in the control group, on the other hand, were personally familiarized with the physical environment of the college. Students' anxiety levels were measured before and after the intervention using the Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI). Independent samples t-test, paired t-test, and chi-square test were used to analyze the data.
Results: The mean anxiety score in the intervention group decreased from 48.2±2.66 to 37.7±3.03 after the intervention (P<0.001). However, the mean anxiety score did not change significantly in the control group (P=0.59).
Conclusion: A 360° virtual tour can reduce the anxiety of newly arrived students before entering the college environment.