Questioning: A tool in the nurse educator's kit

Nicholl, H. M. and Tracey, C. A. B. (2007) Questioning: A tool in the nurse educator's kit. Nurse Education in Practice, 7 (5). pp. 285-292. ISSN 14715953 (ISSN)


Effective questioning is one of the most important teaching techniques and plays a crucial role in creating an effective learning environment. Yet, in nurse education little has been written about this technique or its importance. Most literature refers to the need for lecturers to be skilled in questioning, but less is written about how to develop this essential technique. Being skilled in questioning is an important fundamental step towards becoming an effective lecturer. Developing the skills necessary to help students draw on and apply acquired knowledge in new, unique situations requires the skilled use of questioning. Most experienced lecturers use both written and verbal questioning, but evidence suggests that the majority of their questioning is posed at lower cognitive levels of description. Quality teaching requires students to be engaged with the content of learning tasks designed to reach understanding. Using questioning appropriately facilitates the learning process by requiring the student to participate in the process and to achieve higher comprehension skills by acquiring deep, elaborate understanding of the subject. To acquire and develop this skill, the lecturer is required to understand questioning, to select the tool appropriately and to use questions that are varied, planned, appropriate and humanely posed. The functions of questioning, types of questions and the key skills required for the effective use of this teaching strategy are outlined in this article. © 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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