An assessment approach for competency-based nursing education in a low-income country

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Mukurunge, Eva
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University of the Free State
𝗕𝗮𝗰𝗸𝗴𝗿𝗼𝘂𝗻𝗱: Nursing education institutions in Lesotho were directed by the government to adopt a competency-based curriculum, which required a paradigm shift in assessment methods from traditional to programmatic assessment. However, the implementation of the new assessment approach faced several challenges. Firstly, most nurse educators were unfamiliar with programmatic assessment since it was not included in their formal nursing training. Secondly, during the preparatory stages of programmatic assessment implementation, nursing training institutions could financially afford the initial training opportunity for nurse educators by the assessment experts, which, unfortunately had no follow up trainings. Lastly, unclear programmatic assessment implementation guidelines and a lack of support posed challenges to most of the institutions. 𝗣𝘂𝗿𝗽𝗼𝘀𝗲: The study sought to develop a contextually relevant assessment approach for competency-based nursing education in a low-income country. 𝗠𝗲𝘁𝗵𝗼𝗱𝘀: The development of the assessment approach was guided by multiple methods, which were informed by the Design Science Research methodology. The approach was developed through a multi-phased process. In the first phase, a mapping review was conducted to synthesise literature on the various assessment approaches that have been used in health professions education since the year 2000. The second phase involved engaging with nurse educators to describe the contexts of the nursing education institutions in Lesotho where programmatic assessment was implemented. In the final phase, the findings from the first two phases were used to develop a contextually relevant assessment approach, which was then validated by a panel of assessment experts. 𝗥𝗲𝘀𝘂𝗹𝘁𝘀: The outcome of this study was a contextually relevant assessment approach for competency-based nursing education in a low-resource countries. 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗰𝗹𝘂𝘀𝗶𝗼𝗻: To successfully implement educational innovations, it is important to have a clear understanding of the context of nursing education institutions. This enables the development of relevant implementation strategies that take into account the specific needs and challenges of the institution. Moreover, the development of educational innovations should be based on scientific methodology and should incorporate strategies that have been proven to work. Nursing education institutions in low-income countries need to take an active role in developing contextually relevant educational innovations, rather than relying solely on innovations developed in high-income countries.
Thesis (Ph.D.(Nursing))--University of the Free State, 2023
Competency-based education, Delphi, design science’ low-income country, nursing education institutions, programmatic assessment