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Nursing Students’ Attendance at Learning Activities


The authors of the article are Rejnö, Nordin, Forsgren, Sundell, and Rudolfsson. It was published in the journal Nurse Education Today in 2017. The article was selected to exemplify a quantitative study design. The selected article’s summary was found in an online version of National Institute of Health database of research in healthcare. The summary represents a prospective quantitative study of students’ motivation and ways to enhance their motivation. The authors of the study used attendance lists collected by teachers and official exam score records to assess the effect of non-mandatory learning activities on student engagement in the education process and the success of such an activity.

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Problem Statement

In Sweden, the authors consider passing exams one of the biggest problems in nursing education. Due to a variety of learning and teaching styles, overly rigid education system can adversely influence motivation and, consequently, students’ success. In light of this, the authors deemed it paramount to investigate alternative ways of engaging students in learning activities. Previous research indicated that attendance is related to student success, yet no conclusive research has been produced to state the nature of this relationship.

Statement of Purpose

The study being summarised aimed to describe the effect of attendance of non-obligatory classes on student success in the form of passing exams both in the main curriculum and extracurricular courses. Since the literature review revealed gaps in knowledge of motivation-success relationship in nursing education, the authors decided to clarify this area of study by adding more evidence to the scholarly discussion on the topic.


In accordance with the previous research that had identified a positive correlation between attendance and success, the authors of the study under analysis predicted that this correlation would be further supported by evidence of nursing program at a university in Sweden. In addition, the authors anticipated that attendance would increase students’ performance during exams.

Study Methods

The authors implemented a prospective quantitative methodology to measuring students’ attendance and performance. Data analysis tools included descriptive and analytical statistics. The sample consisted of 361 students of one medical and one nursing program at a university in Western Sweden. Attendance of non-mandatory courses was gathered from teacher’s attendance lists, while exam pass/fail statistics were gathered from student records. The key variables included attendance, pass/fail rate, sex, and age. The variables were measured using mean, median and standard deviation. This information was then used to build analytical statistics in the form of trends.

Key Findings

One of the key findings was that the more learning occasions a student had, the higher his or her chances of passing the exam were. On average, with 75% attendance rate, the chance of passing was 3 times higher than in students with 20% attendance rate (Rejnö, Nordin, Forsgren, Sundell, & Rudolfsson, 2017). Another noteworthy revelation was that attendance was a factor of success on its own, without additional motivators such as credits.

Nursing Students’ Experiences of the Empathy of Their Teachers. A Qualitative Study

Mikkonen, Kyngäs, and Kääriäinen studied the experiences of nursing students in relation to the empathy of their teachers and its result on the professional and academic development of the former. The study was published in the journal called Advancements in Health Sciences Education in 2015. The study was found in an online version of National Institute of Health database of research in healthcare. This particular research was selected because it appeared to be an example of a remarkable qualitative study. The significance of the research is substantiated by the high practical significance of attaining high quality of nursing education.

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Problem Statement

According to the results of the research, empathy was defined as an essential type of assistive behaviour and a mechanism that helps people handle the problems. The study also revealed that empathy is a paramount component of healthy and productive nurse-patient relationship in clinical practice. Yet, there has been a lack of studies devoted to the application of empathy to nursing educational setting. The significance of the problem is amplified by the notion that nursing education often leaves a gap in graduate nurses related to their communication skills. The authors of the study under consideration decided to expand this scientific topic by adding qualitative data for evidence.

Statement of Purpose

The study under analysis aimed to describe experiences of nursing students who received empathy from their professors emphasizing the effect of it on the students’ level of professional development and learning abilities. The additional goal was to address the knowledge gap in scientific literature devoted to the educational application of empathy, especially in a nursing education setting.

Research Questions

In accordance with the previous literary and scholarly discussion in the sphere, the authors identify two research questions. The first one is “How does the empathy of nursing teachers’ influence students and their learning?” (Mikkonen, Kyngäs, & Kääriäinen, 2015, p. 671). The other is “How does experiencing empathy from teachers prepare students to become a nurse?” (Mikkonen et al., 2015, p. 671).

Study Methods

The authors used qualitative methodology due to their claim that this area is broad and majorly under-researched. Data collection methods involved conducting person-to-person interviews with nursing students at a nursing university in Finland. The sample consisted of 12 people of varied age, sex, and cultural background. Each interview lasted about 40 minutes and contained several open-ended questions inquiring about the influence of empathy on a student and its relation to his or her learning process and professional development. The data analysis technique was primarily coding. Each student participated voluntarily and gave their informed consent.

Key Findings

The major revelation the study produced was that professors’ empathy has direct positive impact in the professional development among nursing students. Furthermore, it assists them in finding the motivation to continue their studies. The authors identify poorer patient care as a long-term influence of the lack of empathy.


Mikkonen, K., Kyngäs, H., & Kääriäinen, M. (2015). Nursing students’ experiences of the empathy of their teachers: A qualitative study. Advances in Health Sciences Education, 20(3), 669–682.

Rejnö, Å., Nordin, P., Forsgren, S., Sundell, Y., & Rudolfsson, G. (2017). Nursing students’ attendance at learning activities in relation to attainment and passing courses: A prospective quantitative study. Nurse Education Today, 50, 36–41.

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StudyCorgi. (2021, December 25). Nursing Students’ Attendance at Learning Activities.

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StudyCorgi. 2021. "Nursing Students’ Attendance at Learning Activities." December 25, 2021.


StudyCorgi. (2021) 'Nursing Students’ Attendance at Learning Activities'. 25 December.

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