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Professional Competence Assessment Examination (PCAE) of Pre-Clinical Human Nutrition and Dietetics Students

Biomedical Sciences Research Institute Computer Science Research Institute Environmental Sciences Research Institute Nanotechnology & Advanced Materials Research Institute

Moloney, M, Kinsella, A and McKevitt, Aideen (2006) Professional Competence Assessment Examination (PCAE) of Pre-Clinical Human Nutrition and Dietetics Students. In: To your health:Prevention, Wellness and Nutrition Intervention Across the Lifespan, Dublin, Ireland. American Overseas Dietetic Association. 1 pp. [Conference contribution]

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Objective: To develop a set of professional competence assessment tools, designed toevaluate core competency skills of pre-clinical dietetic students. Methods: Five tools were designedo assess clinical skills required in client management.(i) case study,(ii) diet and lifestyle history,(iii)anthropometry,(iv) nutrition care plan (v) diet/ lifestyle advice. The format of the PCAE simulates a realistic client case. Examination replicates standard outpatient consultation. Each of the 5 components (stations) examines level of attainment of the different clinical skills. Design: Two student groups participated: pre-intervention (n=88) and intervention (n=17). The intervention group had taken an additional intensive competency skills course. Results: All students passed the PCAE with overallmarks ranging from 50% (pass) to 83%. Of twelve students who failed one or more assessment tools, all were from the pre-intervention group. Overall, when the two student groups were compared, an improvement in performance of weaker students in the intervention group was found. In both groups there was a strong tendency for students who attained higher results for the case study, diet and lifestyle history and diet/lifestyle advice components to attain a correspondingly higher PCAE total.Conclusions: The PCAE is a valuable tool in assessment of professional competence in pre-clinical dietetic students. Positive results on the use of the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE), at early stage medical training suggest the benefit of early use of the PCAE in undergraduate dietetic education for development of more effective practitioners.LEARNING OUTCOME: The PCAE is a valuable tool in the assessment of professional competence in pre-clinical students.

Item Type:Conference contribution (Poster)
Faculties and Schools:Faculty of Life and Health Sciences
Faculty of Life and Health Sciences > School of Biomedical Sciences
Research Institutes and Groups:Biomedical Sciences Research Institute
Biomedical Sciences Research Institute > Northern Ireland Centre for Food and Health (NICHE)
ID Code:12846
Deposited By:Dr Aideen McKevitt
Deposited On:21 Apr 2010 09:21
Last Modified:01 Nov 2011 12:14

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