DC, UOIT and Georgian College to partner on Nursing student evaluation study
Durham College, in partnership with the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) and Georgian College, recently received more than $161,000 from the College-University Consortium Council (CUCC) to complete a study that will evaluate their Registered Practical Nursing – Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RPN-BScN) Degree Completion Collaborative program. The research aims to gain a better understanding of student behaviours and performance and overall student experience.
The funding follows a proposal submitted by Dr. Sue Coffey, director, Nursing program, UOIT Faculty of Health Sciences, in response to the CUCC’s inquiry for post-secondary student mobility research. The research project, entitled Research Related to Post-Secondary Student Mobility: Three-Partner Collaborative Evaluation of Student Transition, Performance, Experience, and Outcomes in Practical Nurse (PN) to Nursing Degree (BScN) Bridging Education, will be completed by the end of 2012.
“The purpose of this project is to evaluate the RPN-BScN bridge program and look at the impact of different educational modalities,” said Dr. Coffey. “It is important to understand what conditions best support student success and to develop best practices in relation to this type of education and this type of non-traditional student.”
The research team is comprised of Dr. Gail Lindsay, associate professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, UOIT; Susan Sproul, dean, School of Health & Community Services, Durham College; and Dr. Elizabeth Erwin, associate dean, Health Sciences and Wellness, Georgian College.
“The research will be have three phases,” said Dr. Coffey. “We will look at the student experience and performance in the program and as they transition into practice post-completion of the BScN degree. Our goal is to begin to shed light onto possible best approaches for bridging in nursing education. This is an opportunity for us to highlight what kinds of innovative education practices support student success and increase accessibility for students seeking an opportunity to bridge from PN to BScN level education.”
The research team is joined by experienced faculty from all three institutions including Dr. Carolyne Byrne, founding dean, Faculty of Health Sciences, UOIT; Amanda Laird, senior lecturer, UOIT; Karen Macdonald, co-ordinator, collaborative PN-BScN bridging program, Georgian College; Marianne Cochrane, professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, UOIT; and Sandra Mairs, Katherine Cummings and Patricia Munro-Gilbert, professors, School of Health & Community Services, Durham College. Two graduates from the Durham College and UOIT collaborative BScNprogram will also work as research assistants to complete the timely study.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for all three post-secondary institutions to come together to conduct research truly designed to benefit collaborative nursing students – now and in the future”, said Sproul. “The Durham College School of Health & Community Services is proud to be playing a key role in this joint research project, which is designed to determine the best educational approaches for students looking to bridge from an RPN to RN role and help support them as they work to further their education and move ahead with their careers.”
In addition to project collaborators, Dr. Ellen Vogel, dean, Faculty of Health Sciences, UOIT, was actively involved in the development of the proposal and will serve as part of the academic administration representation along with Judy Robinson, vice-president, Academic, Durham College and Dr. Cassandra Thompson, dean, Health Sciences, Georgian College.
It is anticipated the knowledge gathered over the next year will lead to improved practices for students bridging from RPN to RN with the potential to also assist students transitioning in other programs.share