EFFECT OF GENDER ON LEARNING STYLE PREFERENCES OF NURSING STUDENTS IN SOME INSTITUTIONS IN EDO STATE, NIGERIA
Nursing previously a female-dominated profession is beginning to see a handful of male entrants. Students often ask questions in class concerning their learning styles. This study investigated learning style preferences based on gender. A descriptive cross-sectional survey research design with the aid of a self-administered questionnaire was applied to investigate 206 nursing students from 2 institutions in Edo State, Nigeria. The instrument used for the study, the questionnaire was validated by extensive literature search based on study objectives and consultation with 2 experts; 1 in measurement and evaluation in educational studies and another in nursing science with expertise in mental health nursing. Reliability was through the use of an adapted instrument by Kolb. Data were analyzed with Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 21 in tables and percentages. Chi-square statistical technique was used to analyse the non-parametric data at a significance level of 0.05. Findings revealed that 52(36.1%) of the respondents were female convergers while 12(27.1%) were male divergers. There are 8(16.7%) male assimilators and 28(19.4%) female accommodators respectively. The females scored more on concrete experience such as watching videos or fieldwork, with a mean and Standard Deviation of 40.15±5.80 while the males had 9.24±5.98, with a p-value of 0.026 indicating that this was statistically significant. The only concrete experience was significant while reflective observation, abstract conceptualization and active experimentation were not significant. The study concludes that students have their own preferred way to recognize, retain and retrieve information irrespective of gender. It, therefore, recommends the development of comprehensive, up-to-date resources for learning such as a departmental library with internet facilities and the use of blended learning by nurse lecturers.
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