University Teachers’ Perceptions of Screening Students’ Communication Skills: A Case Study from Speech Pathology
Keywords:clinical skills development, communication screening, communication skills, health students, university teacher perceptions
Excellent communication and interpersonal skills are necessary for allied health professionals to provide effective care/treatment and underpin the practice-based competencies allied health students must develop. Communication skills of first year speech pathology (SP) students are screened at the major Australian metropolitan university where this study took place. Final year students screen their first year peers as part of their practice-based education experience. Although this identifies first year students with communication difficulties, the perceived value to university teachers (academics and practice educators) has not been investigated. This study described university staff perceptions of screening the communication skills of first year SP students. The qualitative, descriptive design included two focus groups. The dataset was analysed thematically. The analysis revealed the staff perception of value in screening communication skills to inform student support. Two sub-themes contributing to this perception were ‘purpose of the screener’ and ‘content and administration of the screener’. Both staff groups strongly valued the screening process, stating that it is positive and useful. A similar screening process could identify first year students from a range of health fields with less skilled communication, who may require additional support to achieve competency.
Attrill, S., Lincoln, M. and McAllister, S. (2012) 'Student diversity and implications for clinical competency development amongst domestic and international speech-language pathology students'. International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology (14) 3, 260-270 doi 10.3109/17549507.2011.652172
Attrill, S., Lincoln, M. and McAllister, S. (2015) 'International students in speech-language pathology clinical education placements: Perceptions of experience and competency development'. International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology (17) 3, 314-324 doi 10.3109/17549507.2015.1016109
Attrill, S., Lincoln, M. and McAllister, S. (2016) 'Supervising international students in clinical placements: perceptions of experiences and factors influencing competency development'. BMC Medical Education (16) 1, 1 doi 10.1186/s12909-016-0702-5
Brown, T., Williams, B., Boyle, M., Molloy, A., McKenna, L., Palermo, C., Molloy, L. and Lewis, B. (2011) 'Communication styles of undergraduate health students'. Nurse education today (31) 4, 317-322 doi 10.1016/j.nedt.2010.06.006
Chan, A., Purcell, A. and Power, E. (2016) 'A systematic review of assessment and intervention strategies for effective clinical communication in culturally and linguistically diverse students'. Medical Education (50) 9, 898-911 doi 10.1111/medu.13117
Corbin, J., Strauss, A. and Strauss, A. L. (2014) 'Basics of qualitative research'. Sage
Ehrlinger, J., Johnson, K., Banner, M., Dunning, D. and Kruger, J. (2008) 'Why the unskilled are unaware: Further explorations of (absent) self-insight among the incompetent'. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes (105) 1, 98-121 doi 10.1016/j.obhdp.2007.05.002
Forrest, K. and Naremore, R. C. (1998) 'Analysis of criteria for graduate admissions in speech-language pathology: Predictive utility of application materials'. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology (7) 4, 57 doi 10.1044/1058-0360.0704.57
Gale, T. and Tranter, D. (2011) 'Social justice in Australian higher education policy: An historical and conceptual account of student participation'. Critical studies in education (52) 1, 29-46 doi 10.1080/17508487.2011.536511
Greenbank, P. (2006) 'The evolution of government policy on widening participation'. Higher Education Quarterly (60) 2, 141-166
Hussainy, S. Y., Styles, K. and Duncan, G. (2012) 'A virtual practice environment to develop communication skills in pharmacy students'. American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education (76) 10, 202 doi 10.5688/ajpe7610202
Moore, M. L. (2013) 'Predictive Admission Criteria in Graduate Programs in Speech-Language Pathology'. Western Kentucky University http://digitalcommons.wku.edu/diss/52
Moriña Díez, A., López, R. G. and Molina, V. M. (2015) 'Students with disabilities in higher education: a biographical-narrative approach to the role of lecturers'. Higher Education Research & Development (34) 1, 147-159
Nemeth, E. and McAllister, L. (2010) 'Learning from Failure'. in Clinical and Fieldwork Placement in the Health Professions. ed. by Stagnitti, K., Shoo, A., and Welch, D. 1 South Melbourne, Vic: Oxford University Press, 218-230
Parry, R. H. and Brown, K. (2009) 'Teaching and learning communication skills in physiotherapy: What is done and how should it be done?'. Physiotherapy (95) 4, 294-301
Pederson, H. R. (1988) 'Students with communication difficulties in master level speech-language pathology programs: prevalence, academic and clinical progress, and related program policies'. Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, University of Montana
Physiotherapy Board of Australia & Physiotherapy Board of New Zealand (2015) 'Physiotherapy practice thresholds in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand'. https://physiocouncil.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/Physiotherapy-Board-Physiotherapy-practice-thresholds-in-Australia-and-Aotearoa-New-Zealand.pdf [January 2018]
Rabiee, F. (2004) 'Focus-group interview and data analysis'. Proceedings of the nutrition society (63) 4, 655
Rider, E. A., Hinrichs, M. M. and Lown, B. A. (2006) 'A model for communication skills assessment across the undergraduate curriculum'. Medical teacher (28) 5, e127-e134 doi 10.1080/01421590600726540
Shapiro, D. A., Ogletree, B. T. and Dale Brotherton, W. (2002) 'Graduate students with marginal abilities in communication sciences and disorders: Prevalence, profiles, and solutions'. Journal of communication disorders (35) 5, 421-451
Speech Pathology Australia (2003) Scope of Practice. [online] available from http://www.speechpathologyaustralia.org.au/referring-professionals/scope-of-practice [20/9/16]
Speech Pathology Australia (2011) Competency-based Occupational Standards (CBOS) for Speech Pathologists: Entry Level. [online] available from http://www.speechpathologyaustralia.org.au/all-latest-news/1037-cbos-2011 [26/9/16]
Stupans, I., Owen, S., Ryan, G., Woulfe, J. and McKauge, L. (2010) 'Scaffolding patient counselling skills in Australian university pharmacy programs'. Asia-Pacific Journal of Cooperative Education (11) 2, 29-37
Taylor, J., Burley, M. and Nestel, D. (2015) 'Integrating interprofessional education and simulation in community health: Evaluation of a practice-based student clinic'. International Journal of Practice-based Learning in Health and Social Care (3) 1, 94-107
Tong, A., Sainsbury, P. and Craig, J. (2007) 'Consolidated criteria for reporting qualitative research (COREQ): a 32-item checklist for interviews and focus groups'. International Journal for Quality in Health Care (19) 6, 349-357 doi 10.1093/intqhc/mzm042
Wagner, J., Liston, B. and Miller, J. (2011) 'Developing interprofessional communication skills'. Teaching and learning in nursing (6) 3, 97-101
How to Cite
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons License "Attribution-NonCommercial No Derivs 4.0 International" (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) which permits others to use the publication as long as the authors are appropriately cited.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).
- The Author grants to Coventry University an irrevocable, royalty-free, worldwide, non-exclusive licence to publish this article in this journal in addition to the licence granted at paragraph 1 of this copyright notice.