A big congratulations to Mrs. Hayley Hodgson, who has recently been awarded the best podium presentation (based on her MTech Research) at the Faculty of Health Science Research Conference on the 16 October 2019 will also soon be graduating with her MTech Radiography (Research) - cum laude result on the 12 December 2019. 

Mrs. Hodgson's research looked into the "Experiences of Undergraduate Diagnostic Radiography Students Regarding Assessor Feedback during Summative Clinical Assessments". 

The Abstract of her research can be found below:

Assessment and feedback are closely interlinked terms. High quality feedback within education and assessment can have a profound influence on learning. Summative clinical assessments and feedback, conducted in clinical training sites, are vital steps in successfully preparing an undergraduate diagnostic radiography student for the desired outcome of a competent, skilled diagnostic radiographer. Feedback has the potential to close the gap between a student’s actual clinical performance and desired clinical performance.

Despite the importance of feedback, students across the globe, particularly in the health professions, are dissatisfied with the current feedback systems. Failure to provide effective feedback within the clinical context can be detrimental to patient safety because students have a false impression of their clinical skills and competencies.

The aim of the study was to explore and describe the experiences of undergraduate diagnostic radiography students regarding assessor feedback during summative clinical assessments. A qualitative, exploratory, descriptive, and contextual research design was used to gain in-depth knowledge of the experiences of undergraduate diagnostic radiography students regarding assessor feedback during summative clinical assessments. Data were gathered from students by means of semi-structured focus group interviews, transcribed verbatim and coded using Tesch’s eight steps.

Two principal themes emerged from the data analysis.

  • Theme 1 unpacked whether an assessor is an ally or foe.
  • Theme 2 focussed on key elements that influence the nature of the feedback process.

There were various positive experiences regarding assessor feedback during the summative clinical assessments reported by the participants. However, they were dissatisfied with numerous aspects of assessor feedback during their summative clinical assessments and this subsequently impeded their learning experience. Measures to ensure trustworthiness and ethical research practices governed this research study.

Based on the findings, the recommendations include that the higher education institution, clinical supervisors, and radiography students, should utilise feedback as a learning tool for skills development during summative clinical assessments.