Helping a Low-Performing Student
Determining the Cause of Low Performance
- Ask about the student’s perception of his or her performance.
- Question the student to determine any knowledge deficits.
- Observe the student closely to look for areas where performance is not satisfactory.
Possible Performance Problems and Solutions
Knowledge Deficits (cognitive domain)
- Assign readings or research
- Request written or oral reports
- Create written or oral quizzes
Skill/Performance Deficits (psychomotor domain)
- Clinical instructor demonstration/student observation
- Student practice with the clinical instructor and/or a tech as the patient
- Break the skill into component parts with practice on the problem areas.
- Practice the whole skill when student performance is satisfactory on each part.
- Use a variety of practice methods to teach the skill:
- Student places his/her hands over the hands of the clinical instructor (hand-over-hand practice) while the clinical instructor performs a procedure on a real patient
- Clinical instructor and student perform procedure on a patient and compare results
- Patient feedback after clinical instructor and student perform the same procedure on the patient
Clinical Reasoning Deficits
- Guided questioning
- Paper cases
- Assignments (preplanning for patient encounters with written and/or oral review by the clinical instructor)
- Discussion of patients and/or plan of care prior to patient encounters
- Simpler cases and/or working together with the clinical instructor to solve problems
Professional Behavior or Attitude Deficits (affective domain)
Use these tools to define unacceptable behaviors:
- Reflective journals on the effect of the inappropriate behavior
- Letter of apology
- Written assignments
- Case studies/ethical problem-solving exercises