A pedagogical model to enhance nurses' ability to support patient learning: an educational design research study

Int J Med Educ. 2022 Jul 29;13:176-186. doi: 10.5116/ijme.62c2.b9c4.


Objectives: To design, apply, evaluate, and analyse a pedagogical model to enhance nurses' ability to create pedagogical encounters to support patients' learning.

Methods: The study relies on an educational design research approach. A pedagogical model based on learning theories was designed, applied, evaluated, and analysed in a specialist nursing programme in cancer care. All students (n=28) who attended the programme accepted to participate in the evaluation of the model. Their perception of the learning activities was evaluated in a questionnaire, and 16 (57%) students responded. The students' learning was assessed in written assignments, including all students. Descriptive statistics, content analysis and theoretical reasoning, were used to analyse data and interpret the usefulness and shortcomings of the model.

Results: The most appreciated learning activities were to study learning theories, observe pedagogical encounters, act as a critical friend, and document one's own pedagogical encounters. The written assignments about observing and performing their own pedagogical encounters with patients showed students' increased awareness of how to support patients' learning. The clinical supervisors' lack of pedagogical knowledge inhibited the feedback on students' performances.

Conclusions: The theoretical analysis of the evaluation identified strengths and needs for further development. The strengths tend to be the ongoing learning process created by learning activities supporting students to continuously study, experience, and apply their knowledge. Nurse supervisors and other stakeholders at the clinics are suggested to be involved in improving the design and require pedagogical competence. Further research should include observational and interview studies related to students' performance in pedagogical encounters.

Keywords: educational design research; nurse education; patients' learning; pedagogical model; students' learning.

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence
  • Humans
  • Learning
  • Models, Educational
  • Nurses*
  • Students, Nursing*
  • Writing