A chill went down my spine as I watched my assignment slip into the void of the submission box. A whole year has passed. Do I feel ready for the next?
As a nursing student, I wonder if the balance between theory and practice is right. Can a completed assignment really give you the confidence to deal with a situation in real life?
I regularly ask myself about this. It worries me that over the years many taught subjects have become deprived of their practical components.
Can I really understand the impact of communicating bad news to a patient simply by watching a video or viewing a PowerPoint presentation?
I’m not sure anyone can be expected to be confident in communicating bad news to a living, breathing and, most of all, reacting patient on the basis of a classroom session.
There has to be a balance between what is assessed practically and what is assessed academically.
I feel that as a nursing student I am assessed academically in all of my modules but practical assessment is minimal.
Passing an academic assignment shows we have understood the knowledge taught to us and can apply it to the academic question given.
Would it also prove that we are competent to deal with the unpredictability of real-life situations?
With this change to a more theory-based method of teaching, I wonder whether we will emerge confident enough,
as nurses, to face the imperfect world ahead.
James Squires is a second-year adult nursing student in London
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