First year learner nurses‘ perceptions on self-directed learning during clinical activities in the skills laboratory
Self-directed learning (SDL) has become a focus in the past years due to the increase in the complexity and changes in the nursing profession development. Employing SDL methodologies has been advantageous to the learner nurses, since these methodologies are associated with moderate improvement in the knowledge and effective improvement in the affective and psychomotor domains. Despite the efforts to expose students to SDL, the challenge remains the lack of students‘ commitment to SDL during clinical activities in the skills laboratory. This lack of commitment may result from students‘ perceptions of SDL. Therefore, this study seeks to explore and describe the perceptions of first year learner nurses about self-directed learning activities in a skills laboratory at a school of nursing in the Western Cape. An exploratory descriptive quantitative design was used to answer the research question. All the first year learner nurses (N=336) pursuing a 4-year Bachelor Nursing Degree served as the target population and a sample of 168 respondents was selected by simple random sampling. A self-administered 5-point Likert scale questionnaire with an additional four open-ended questions was used to collect data for the study. Data was analysed by using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) Version 21 software. Descriptive statistics were used to present frequencies, mean values, standard deviations, and the results were illustrated by means of tables. The Spearman correlation coefficient indicated the correlations between the 4 The findings revealed that most of the respondents positively perceived self-directed learning in the skills laboratory. However, it was also found that learners had challenges in relation to time management during the implementation of self-directed learning.