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Improving Knowledge and Attitudes of Electronic Medical Records in First Semester Nursing Students and Their Faculty
  • Dr. Belinda J. Deal, University of Texas at Tyler
  • Lasi McArthur
Pilot Project
Evidence is lacking regarding nursing students and faculty, and the effect of integrating academic EMRs (Gardner & Jones, 2012; Hunter, McGonigle, & Hebda, 2013; Kennedy, Pallikkathayil, & Warren, 2009).  No published tools to evaluate successful integration of academic EMRs could be located.  Current research shows that faculty are the biggest barrier to integrating technology into the nursing student classroom (Gardner & Jones, 2012; Mahon, Nickitas, & Nokes, 2010; Nickitas, et al., 2010). The purpose of this study is to determine if use of electronic tablets in the classroom improves knowledge and attitudes about informatics in first semester BSN students and their faculty using an electronic medical record (EMR) academic module.

Research questions are: In first semester nursing students, how does using an electronic tablet to apply knowledge immediately after EMR training affect knowledge and attitudes about informatics?  In faculty who are teaching first semester BSN students about using an EMR application, is there a change in knowledge and attitudes about informatics?

A convenience sample was used to select students who did not have electronic tablets. Tablets were provided to complete academic EMR assignments in class.  Anonymous pre- and post-surveys were used to gather data from students and faculty.  In order to evaluate knowledge and attitudes about EMR, survey questions were developed by the research team using the Quality and Safety Education for Nurses (QSEN) competencies for Informatics as a guide.  Content validity was determined prior to implementation.  Items assessed knowledge of and attitudes toward:  the value of information technology (IT) to nursing practice; patient confidentiality as it relates to IT; value of nurses’ involvement in design of IT; appreciation of IT skills; and the necessity of continuing IT education.  Lastly, qualitative data was gathered via faculty and student reflective journals.

Analysis and summary of results
Out of 107 first semester BSN students invited to participate, 10 completed the pre-survey (9%) and 8 completed the post-survey (8%).  Out of seven course faculty, 3 completed the pre-survey (42%) and 5 completed the post-survey (71%).  Additionally, there was one journal response each from students and faculty. Pre and post survey data analysis is in progress.

Discussion of recommendations regarding implications for practice
Roger’s Diffusion of Innovations Theory suggests how the knowledge and attitudes of faculty regarding informatics may affect students’ adoption of an academic EMR.  Recommendations for future research include:  directing research chiefly on the faculty’s knowledge and attitudes through interviews; utilizing a larger sample size; and conducting a randomized trial. Additional insights are shared regarding lessons learned when implementing a pilot study.
Publication Date
Citation Information
Deal, Belinda (PI:75%), McArthur, Lasi (CoInvestigator:25%) Improving Knowledge and Attitudes of Electronic Medical Records in First Semester Nursing Students and Their Faculty, The University of Texas at Tyler Academic Innovation Equipment grant (September 4, 2013 - December 10, 2013) Awarded: August 28, 2013, USD 5,599.80 Completed Spring 2014