Focus group study of student physiotherapists' perceptions of reflection

Roche, A. and Coote, S. (2008) Focus group study of student physiotherapists' perceptions of reflection. Medical Education, 42 (11). pp. 1064-1070. ISSN 03080110 (ISSN)

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Context: The reflective practice module in the physiotherapy programme at the University of Limerick, Ireland represents the first incidence of the inclusion of such a module within physiotherapy curricula in Ireland. However, research examining the contribution of reflection as a means of learning is limited, particularly from the student perspective. Objectives: This study sought to explore students' perceptions of reflection and its potential contribution to their development before and after the module. Methods: A qualitative research methodology using focus groups was employed to evaluate physiotherapy undergraduate students' perceptions of the module. Three focus groups were held in total. Two were held with Year 3 students, before and after their reflective practice module, respectively, to examine any changes in their perceptions of reflection. A third was held with Year 4 students to determine their perceptions after both the module and subsequent clinical placements. Sessions were audiotaped, transcribed and subjected to in-depth thematic analysis to resolve the significant themes that emerged from the data. Results: Students reported a more advanced level of reflective ability post-module completion. They perceived personal and professional benefits to practising reflection and recognised these skills as strategies with which they could continue to facilitate their professional development. For students, time constraints in the clinical setting represented a barrier to reflection. Conclusions: Students support inclusion of the module in their training, acknowledging its role in improving their confidence and clinical reasoning, and facilitating continuing professional development. Further studies are required to generalise these findings to a wider population. © Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2008.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Cited By :13; Export Date: 23 February 2015; CODEN: MEDUD; Correspondence Address: Roche, A.; Department of Physiotherapy, Health Science Building, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland; email:; References: Donaghy, M.E., Morss, K., Guided reflection: A framework to facilitate and assess reflective practice within the discipline of physiotherapy (2000) Physiother Theory Pract, 16, pp. 3-14; Schön, D., (1983) The Reflective Practitioner: How Professionals Think-in-Action., pp. 10-4. , New York: Basic Books; Newell, R., Reflection: Art, science or pseudo-science (1994) Nurse Educ Today, 14, pp. 79-81; MacKintosh, C., Reflection: A flawed strategy for the nursing profession (1999) Nurse Educ Today, 18, pp. 553-7; Carr, S., Carmody, D., Experiential learning in women's health: Medical student reflections (2006) Med Educ, 40, pp. 768-74; Ward, A., Gracey, J., Reflective practice in physiotherapy curricula: A survey of UK university-based professional practice co-ordinators (2006) Med Teach, 28 (1), pp. 32-9; (2003) Work-based Learning: Evidencing Through Reflection and Evaluation., p. 7. , Chartered Society of Physiotherapists (CSP). London: CSP; Williams, R., Wessel, J., Gemus, M., Foster-Seargeant, E., Journal writing to promote reflection by physical therapy students during clinical placement (2002) Physiother Theory Pract, 18, pp. 5-15; Paget, T., Reflective practice and clinical outcomes: Practitioners' views on how reflective practice has influenced their clinical practice (2001) J Clin Nurs, 10, pp. 204-14; Hollis, V., Openshaw, S., Goble, R., Conducting focus groups: Purpose and practicalities (2002) Br J Occup Ther, 65 (1), pp. 2-8; Krueger, R., (1998) Developing Questions for Focus Groups., p. 21. , London: Sage Publications; Krueger, R., (1998) Analysing and Reporting Focus Group Results., pp. 31-52. , London: Sage Publications; Atkinson, J.M., Heritage, J., Jefferson's transcript notation (1999) The Discourse Reader., pp. 158-66. , In: Jaworski, A., Coupland, N., eds. London: Routledge; Donaghy, M.B., Morss, K., An evaluation of a framework for facilitating and assessing physiotherapy students' reflection on practice (2007) Physiother Theory Pract, 23 (2), pp. 83-94; Lahteenmaki, M., Reflectivity in supervised practice: Conventional and transformative approaches to physiotherapy (2005) Learn Health Soc Care, 4 (1), pp. 18-28; Platzer, H., Blake, D., Ashford, D., Barriers to learning from reflection: A study of the use of group work with post-registration nurses (2000) J Adv Nurs, 31 (5), pp. 1001-8; Barnard, S., Wiles, R., Evidence-based physiotherapy. Physiotherapists' attitudes and experiences in the Wessex area (2001) Physiotherapy, 87 (3), pp. 115-23; Gibson, B.E., Martin, D.K., Qualitative research and evidence-based physiotherapy practice (2003) Physiotherapy, 89 (6), pp. 350-8; McDaniel, R.W., Bach, C.A., Focus group research: The question of scientific rigour (1996) Rehabil Nurs Res, 5 (2), pp. 53-9; Mays, N., Pope, C., Qualitative research in health care: Assessing quality in qualitative research (2000) BMJ, 320 (7226), pp. 50-2
Uncontrolled Keywords: *education, medical, undergraduate; Attitude of health personnel; Clinical competence/*standards; Curriculum; Humans; Perception; Physical therapy modalities/*education; Students, medical/*psychology; article; concept analysis; controlled study; female; human; male; medical student; methodology; physiotherapist; physiotherapy; population; privacy; professional development; qualitative analysis; reflection; skill; thematic analysis; time; training; Clinical Competence; Education, Medical; Education, Nursing; Focus Groups; Ireland; Physical Therapists; Self-Assessment; Students, Health Occupations
Depositing User: National Forum
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2015 22:13
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2015 22:16

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