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A study of the interaction between learner characteristics, two methods of CPR instruction, and affects on retention of CPR competencies Public Deposited

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  • Problem: The primary purpose of this study was to investigate interactions between learner characteristics and instructional settings and their affect on retention of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR.) competency.. An effort was made to determine if college students identified as Independent or Dependent-Conforming learners interacted with traditional or self-instructional CPR educational modes. At the conclusion of the course, the initial interaction effect was investigated to obtain data that would later be used as a statistical covariant for retention analysis. The final concern of this study was the investigation of the affect on initial learning and retention of the Basic Life Support competency when groups were compared either by learning orientation or by instructional approach. Method: The sample for the study consisted of 128 randomly-selected college students who had registered for Health Science 161, Basic Life Support and Health Selence 160, Emergency Procedures. These classes were conducted at California State University, Northridge during the spring semeaten, 1978. The California Psychological Inventory (Sections 13, 14) Achievement via Conformence (Ac), Achievement via Independence (Ai), and Rotter's Locus of Control were used to identify the students' learning orientation. This study used both a four-group and a two-group experimental design. The interaction study used four research cells of equal size. Independent learners were taught using both the traditional and self-instructional approaches. Dependent-Conforming learners were taught using these same two approaches. All groups were tested upon the completion of the course and retested six months later using identical procedures. The two hypotheses developed to examine learning and retention related to learner traits were tested using a one-way analysis of variance and a one-way analysis of covariance. The same statistical tools were used to test for differences between instructional methods related to learning and retention. Finally, the two hypotheses investigating interaction affect on immediate learning and decay of competency used two-way, fixed models of analysis of variance and covariance, respectively. The American National Red Cross written examination, performance protocol test and a print-out from a Recording Resusci Anne were used to measure cognitive understanding and psychomotor proficiency. Data collected with the instruments were evaluated separately and in combination to determine what differences, if any, existed between learner groups or instructional modes. In addition, separate and over-all testing protocol mean scores were examined to find possible differences among groups based on interaction effect. Statistical significansc was set at the .05 confidence level for all hypotheses. Results: Neither the instructional approach nor the learning orientation appears to affect the initial learning and/or retention of the CPR competency as measured by the previously identified instruments. However, a significant difference was found in written examination scores when instructional methods were compared. The self-instructional system proved to be a superior method for insuring better cognitive learning and retention. There was no initial interaction effect among groups; however, a difference was found among the groups when retention was explored. Dependent-Conforming learners, taught in the traditional setting, showed better retention scores and less decay of the over-all CPR competency than Independent learners taught in the same mode. Conclusions: Evaluation of written examination mean scores showed the self-instructional system to be a superior approach to obtain and retain cognitive knowledge. The results of the study indicate that interaction does occur between independent and dependent learning characteristics and the traditional method of CFR instruction when the passage of time is an added variable.
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