The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

1998 OPEN FORUM Abstracts

PREDICTORS OF GRADUATE PERFORMANCE ON SELECTED RESPIRATORY CARE PROGRAM OUTCOME MEASURES: THE RESULTS OF A PILOT STUDY.

Terry S. LeGrand, PhD, RRT and David C. Shelledy, PhD, RRT, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, TX.

Respiratory care (RC) programs seek to prepare competent practitioners. Success in achieving this goal is often assessed by outcome measures including NBRC examinations, employers' evaluations of graduates and graduates' evaluations of the program. OBJECTIVE: We sought to determine the ability of students' entering GPA (EGPA), program prerequisite GPA (PGPA), pre-admission interview score (I), general critical thinking ability (CT) as assessed by the Watson-Glaser, end-of-first-year competency exam (FYEX), in-program GPA (RCGPA) and performance on an NBRC written registry self-assessment exam (WRRTSAE) to predict graduate outcomes. METHOD: Existing records of all graduates (n=20) of a new baccalaureate RC program were reviewed to obtain the scores for specific predictor variables. Outcome measures obtained were NBRC CRTT scores, end-of-program competency assessment results utilizing a restricted version of the NBRC written registry exam (WRTT) and information gathering (IG) and decision making (DM) scores on a clinical simulation exam given near program completion. Graduates and employers were surveyed to assess achievement of cognitive (CS), psychomotor (PS) and affective (AS) program standards. Pearson product-moment correlations and forward step-wise regression analyses were performed to determine the ability of the independent variables to predict specific outcomes. Results: CRTT exam scores were significantly correlated with EGPA (r=0.54, p < 0.05), PGPA (r=0.65, p < 0.01), CT (r=0.63, p < 0.01) and FYEX (r=0.66, p < 0.01). WRRT scores were significantly correlated with EGPA (r=0.49, p < 0.05), PGPA (r=0.61, p < 0.01) and WRRTSAE (r=0.48, p < 0.05). DM was significantly correlated with I (r=0.49, p < 0.05), FYEX (r=0.62, p < 0.01) and RCGPA (r=0.47, p < 0.01). Graduate evaluations for CS (r=0.61, p < 0.01), PS (r=0.54, p < 0.05) and AS (r=0.60, p < 0.01) were significantly correlated with FYEX. The coefficient of multiple correlation, R^{2}, indicated that in combination, the independent variables accounted for 77% of the variance observed in CRTT scores, 61% of the variance in the WRRT, and 78% of the variance in DM. For graduates' evaluations, 38% of the variance in CS, 29% of the variance in PS, and 50% of the variance in AS was explained. For employers' evaluations of graduates, 60% of the variance in AS was explained. The strongest predictors of outcome variables, based on regression analysis, were I, EGPA, PGPA, FYEX and WRRTSAE. There was no relationship between predictor variables and IG scores or employer evaluations for CS and PS. CONCLUSION: Applicant interview scores, EGPA, PGPA, CT, FYEX and WRRTSAE may be useful in predicting graduate performance on selected program outcome measures.

The 44th International Respiratory Congress Abstracts-On-DiskĀ®, November 7 - 10, 1998, Atlanta, Georgia.

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