Validation of a questionnaire evaluating the effect of a preparatory year on qualifying students for studying at health professions education faculties
Background. The preparatory year or first-year experience in higher education aims to consistently meet the needs of students, institutions and broader society. It aims to help students transition from high school to university, acquaint them with the various academic disciplines at university and introduce them to the university environment.
Objectives. To validate a newly developed instrument that evaluates the effect of the preparatory year on preparing students for studying in health professions education faculties.
Methods. A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted at King Abdulaziz University, Saudi Arabia, on a comprehensive sample of male and female second- and third-year students who completed their preparatory year and started studying at health professions education faculties. Data were collected through a questionnaire newly developed by the authors. Descriptive statistics were used and statistical significance was set at p<0.05.
Results. The study showed high internal consistency of the questionnaire. Cronbach’s alpha coefficient value for the total scale was 0.94. Among the 5 dimensions of the questionnaire, the students were highly satisfied with ‘university conduct’, but less so with the ‘perception of teachers, teaching and assessment’.
Conclusion. There was good validity and reliability of the newly developed questionnaire. From a student’s perspective, the preparatory-year programme needs to be revisited.
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