Original Research

Blended learning: Assessing nursing students’ perspectives

Ilze Steenkamp, Jennifer Chipps
Curationis | Vol 47, No 1 | a2579 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/curationis.v47i1.2579 | © 2024 Ilze Steenkamp, Jennifer Chipps | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 06 December 2023 | Published: 05 July 2024

About the author(s)

Ilze Steenkamp, Department of Nursing, Faculty of Community and Health Sciences, University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, South Africa
Jennifer Chipps, Department of Nursing, Faculty of Community and Health Sciences, University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, South Africa

Abstract

Background: Blended learning combines face-to-face and online learning and has recently gained popularity, accelerated by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, often without active evaluation.

Objectives: This study aimed to assess university nursing students’ perceptions of a blended learning approach during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Method: The population was 150 third-year nursing students from a university in the Western Cape, South Africa, using all-inclusive sampling. A one-group, pre-and post-evaluation study was conducted using a self-administered questionnaire (Student Perceptions of Blended Learning scale). Differences were assessed using Chi-squared and Mann–Whitney U tests with a significance level of p < 0.05.

Results: Before implementing blended learning, 128 students (85.3%) completed the questionnaire, while 95 (63.3%) did so after. Demographics and access showed no significant differences between the groups. Post-implementation showed a 10.1% increase in preference for blended learning (χ2 = 2.832, p = 0.092). Ease of use was rated significantly higher before implementation (3.07 ± 0.49), with no significant change post-implementation (2.99 ± 0.58). The blended learning process received lower ratings compared to content, with no significant differences before or after implementation for either (process: 2.55 ± 0.58 vs 2.54 ± 0.63; content: 2.75 ± 0.52 vs 2.79 ± 0.52).

Conclusion: Nursing students had a positive perception of blended learning, though the online learning component posed challenges with time and module comprehension.

Contribution: The findings can help higher education institutions evaluate existing online management systems and guide nurse educators in meeting students’ needs when developing module resources.


Keywords

blended learning; COVID-19; online; perceptions; nursing students

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 4: Quality education

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