Some Factors that Influence Students’ Experiences, Engagement, and Retention in a Practical Nursing Program

  • Viola Manokore NorQuest College
  • Jennifer Mah NorQuest
  • Fauziya Ali NorQuest
Keywords: Belongingness, dropout, practical nursing, student engagement, student retention

Abstract

This paper reports on qualitative data from a larger study that was designed to identify some of the factors that influence practical nursing students’ experiences, engagement, resilience, attrition, performance in the program and professional licensing examination. Some descriptive statistics were included in this paper in order to provide context of the demographics of the students in the program. We explored and identified some factors that influence practical nursing students’ experiences and attrition in the practical nursing program at a community college in the Prairie Region in Alberta. Students enrolled in the program during Winter 2015 term were invited to participate in the study. 263 students consented to participate in the study and completed an online survey on student engagement and belongingness. A total of three focus group discussions (FGDs) were conducted to gather more information on students’ experiences. Exit interviews were completed with 21 students who dropped out of the program. Thematic analysis was done on FGDs and exit interviews. The themes that emerged from the data as main factors that influenced student experiences include institutional, social, and cognitive factors. Exit interview data shows that students “depart” due to financial, academic, family, and career choice changes.

Cet article fait état de données qualitatives tirées d’une plus grande étude conçue pour identifier quelques-uns des facteurs qui influencent les expériences, la participation, la résilience, le taux d’attrition et le rendement des étudiantes infirmières au sein du programme et lors de l’examen d’accréditation professionnelle. Des statistiques descriptives sont présentées de sorte à fournir un contexte démographique des étudiants dans le programme. Nous avons exploré et identifié des facteurs qui influencent les expériences et le taux d’attrition des étudiantes infirmières dans un programme de soins infirmiers auxiliaires d’un collège communautaire dans la Prairie Region en Alberta. Nous avons invité les étudiants inscrits au programme pendant le semestre d’hiver 2015 à participer à l’étude. Au total, 263 étudiants ont accepté d’y participer et ont complété une enquête en ligne portant sur la participation des étudiants et leur sentiment d’appartenance. Trois discussions ont eu lieu avec des groupes de consultation afin de recueillir davantage d’information sur les expériences des étudiants. Des entrevues de départ ont eu lieu avec 21 étudiants qui ont quitté le programme. Les discussions des groupes de consultation et les entrevues de départ ont été soumises à une analyse thématique. L’analyse a permis d’identifier des facteurs qui influencent les expériences des étudiants. Parmi ceux-ci, notons des facteurs institutionnels, sociaux et cognitifs. Les données des entrevues de départ indiquent que les étudiants quittent le programme pour des motifs financiers, académiques, familiaux ou en raison d’un changement de choix de carrière. 

Mots clés : sentiment d’appartenance; décrochage; soins infirmiers auxiliaires; participation des étudiants; rétention des étudiants

Author Biographies

Viola Manokore, NorQuest College
Viola Manokore (PhD) is an Instructor at NorQuest College in the Department of Practical Nursing, Faculty of Health and Community Studies. She has a PhD in Curriculum, Instruction and Teacher Education from Michigan State University. Her research focuses on student engagement, culturally responsive pedagogy and creating learning environments that value students’ out of school funds-of-knowledge.
Jennifer Mah, NorQuest
Jennifer Mah is a Registered Nurse with a Masters in Nursing focusing on education and leadership. She works collaboratively with health and community study leaders to influence policy and shape education. She is passionate about excellence, client centered care, and student success and she strives to make a positive impact. She uses a collaborative approach to discover opportunities, engage with partners and turn ideas into reality. As Associate Dean, Jennifer provides leadership for a variety of programs, some of which are among the largest in the country.
Fauziya Ali, NorQuest
Fauziya Ali (PhD) is an Instructor at NorQuest College in the Department of Health and Community Sciences. Previously, she was an Associate Professor at Aga Khan University School of Nursing and Midwifery, Karachi-Pakistan. Her Ph.D. dissertation explored on the barriers to clinical teaching. Research interests are teaching and learning, self-directed learning, characteristic of learners, curriculum implementation, assessment and evaluation.
Published
2019-05-28
Section
ARTICLES