Background: Clinical education placements provide the opportunity for students to gain practical skills and apply theoretical knowledge not otherwise available in many instances. Objectives: This research explored how undergraduate paramedic students perceive their clinical placement learning environments. Methods: A prospective cross-sectional study using a paper-based survey, the Clinical Learning Environment Inventory (CLEI), was conducted on undergraduate paramedic students studying at a large Australian university in semester 1, 2010. A total of 190 students were invited to participate in the survey. The CLEI is a standardised tool that contains 84-items and six subscales. Findings: Sixty students completed the CLEI (31% response rate). It was found that on both the actual and preferred CLEI forms, Satisfaction was found to be the most important domain having a mean score of 29.68 (SD+3.81) and 31.37 (SD+4.35) respectively.Individualisation was found to be the least important domain in both the actual and preferred form, with mean scores of 20.93 (SD+3.80) and 24.03 (SD+3.82) respectively. This indicated that paramedic students as a group sensed that theSatisfaction aspect of clinical placements are an integral aspect of their preferred clinical learning environment. Results also indicated that all six subscales were statistically different at the p<0.001 level. Conclusion: There were significant differences in the perceptions of paramedic students actual and preferred clinical learning environments. This provides educators with strategies in promoting positive learning experiences for students.
Williams B, Brown T, Winship C. The Mismatch Between Perceived and Preferred Expectations of Undergraduate Paramedic Students. The Internet Journal of Allied Health Sciences and Practice. 2012 Oct 01;10(4), Article 12.