Original Research

Undergraduate research student perceptions

D. Dawson, M. Faure, B. Julius
South African Journal of Physiotherapy | Vol 57, No 1 | a487 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajp.v57i1.487 | © 2018 D. Dawson, B. Julius | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 30 August 2018 | Published: 28 February 2001

About the author(s)

D. Dawson, Physiotherapy Department University of Stellenbosch, South Africa
M. Faure, Physiotherapy Department University of Stellenbosch, South Africa
B. Julius, Physiotherapy Department University of Stellenbosch, South Africa

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Abstract

Health professionals are required to generate evidence via research in order to validate their practice. Undergraduate students in the professions allied to medicine complete a research component in their final year of study. The assumption is that this component will equip them with the knowledge, skills and attitudes to undertake research as clinicians. In this retrospective study, a questionnaire was used to examine the perceptions and experiences of students relating to their research projects. The study population was students studying in the professions allied to medicine on the Tygerberg Campus of the University of Stellenbosch.
The response rate was 77% (n-106). Of these students, 69% enjoyed implementing their research project, whilst 28% did not. However, physiotherapy students experienced this component of their course most negatively. The most positive perceptions of the students related to educational benefits and interest, whilst the most negative results related to time restraints and stress.
In planning for the future, it is important to evaluate the outcomes of the research component of the undergraduate curriculum and its possible effects on the development and practice of the physiotherapy profession


Keywords

undergraduate research; student perceptions; physiotherapy; evidence

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