Academic journal article Contemporary Nurse : a Journal for the Australian Nursing Profession

An Analysis of the Satisfaction Levels of Nursing and Midwifery Students in a Health College in Turkey

Academic journal article Contemporary Nurse : a Journal for the Australian Nursing Profession

An Analysis of the Satisfaction Levels of Nursing and Midwifery Students in a Health College in Turkey

Article excerpt

Student satisfaction is fundamental to improving the educational quality and processes. It is also a source of global competition between higher education institutions (Arambewela & Hall, 2009). Additionally, it is one of optimal outcomes criteria for obtaining accreditation in educational institutions (NLNAC, 2008). Therefore, it has become a major concern for administrators in institutions of education (Ansari, 2002; Umbach & Porter, 2002).

In accordance with the development of strategic plans in higher education, Turkish universities commenced budget planning in 2005, and accordingly, initiatives to enhance desired outcomes for graduate students raised awareness about student satisfaction and emphasized the need for a more detailed analysis.

A study of the recent literature illustrated that only a limited number of studies focused on overall student satisfaction, and they rather dealt with nursing students in nursing schools. Consequently, student satisfaction in health colleges hasn't been properly addressed in a majority of these studies and many issues at stake remain unresolved. This study specifically aims to fill a data gap in student satisfaction in nursing and midwifery education and establish a sound base for better student satisfaction (and thus a better quality in education). This study includes the 2008 results of student satisfaction surveys conducted within a framework of strategic plans on improving the quality of health colleges. In this study, three main questions were to be answered: What is the current level of student satisfaction? How does the satisfaction level vary according to different areas of satisfaction? Does the satisfaction level change on the basis of certain criteria such as school year, department and academic success?


Student satisfaction

Student satisfaction is defined as a pleasurable emotional state resulting from a person's enactment of the role of student (Grace, 2004, p. 12). It also refers to the degree to which student needs and expectations concerning educational programs and environmental factors are addressed (Liegler, 1997, p. 357). In the case where the student's experience exceeds his/her expectations the result is high satisfaction; in the case where the experience is below the expectation, the result is dissatisfaction or in case the expectation is not fully met, mid-level satisfaction occurs (Tütüncü & Dogan, 2003).

Understanding student satisfaction is vital to improving education and increasing its quality as well as evaluating organizational efficacy (Ansari, 2002; Umbach & Porter, 2002). Many researchers state that student satisfaction has effects on student motivation, student retention, recruiting efforts and fundraising (Baykal, Sokmen, Korkmaz, & Akgun, 2005; Corlett, 2000; Elliott & Shin, 2002; Petruzzellis, D fUggento, & Romanazzi, 2006). Focusing on student satisfaction not only enables universities and colleges to re-engineer their organizations to adapt to students f needs, but also allows them to develop a system for continuously monitoring how effectively they meet or exceed students f needs (Elliott & Shin, 2002). Monitoring and measuring student satisfaction will serve to design student guides and decision-making, learning and teaching standards (Ansari & Oskrochi, 2006; Brown & Marshall, 2008). It also contributes to the intellectual, social, and efficient growth and development of students (Liegler, 1997).

A thorough analysis of the studies published both in Turkey and abroad showed that a majority of these studies focused on theoretical and practical education, student expectations, characteristics of efficient and inefficient nurse educators and comparison of student satisfaction levels in nursing programs in various levels (Ansari, 2002; Baykal et al., 2005; Berg & Lindseth, 2004; Boylston, Peters, & Lacey, 2004; et al., 2001; Ulup.nar & Ekizler, 1999). …

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