Make learning fun to increase nursing students’ success: Formative feedback in communication learning

Samantha Ismaile, Fuad Alhosban, Sana Hawamdeh


Communication skills are taught in most Bachelor of Nursing programs; however, student performance is often not monitored or tested until the final exam. Audience Response System (ARS) technology enables the collection of feedback from students during lectures to improve their quality of learning.

We assessed the efficacy of ARS technology in promoting the understanding of communication skills among nursing students.

Questions were integrated into 14 lectures using the ARS platform Learning Catalytics (LC; Pearson UK, London, UK). Students answered the questions using their own web-enabled mobile devices. One hundred and twenty second-year nursing students participated in this study. Their answers were pooled and prompt formative feedback was provided in the classroom. A questionnaire was distributed to evaluate their perceptions of ARS use.

All students reported that they enjoyed ARS use: 92 per cent stated that it helped to identify their learning needs and 87 per cent agreed that it promoted the integration of key concepts. The most common theme within the feedback was that of identifying their own learning needs. Repeated questioning produced a significant increase (p < 0.05) in students’ knowledge of specific concepts.

The use of ARS technology to provide prompt feedback promoted teaching and learning among undergraduate nursing students. ARS use enabled the identification of individual learning needs and aided revision before summative exams. It also improved students’ confidence and understanding of key concepts. Moreover, students of different educational levels and learning styles were identified, tracked and given support through the use of ARS technology.
Full Text: PDF