The purposes of this study were to clarify the cognitive effect on students of the introduction of debating techniques in a maternal nursing course, to conduct an evaluation of the course, and to apply the results in designing future courses.
This study examined the effect of debate-based learning by conducting an overall course evaluation (three items) along with a more detailed evaluation (twenty-seven items) by means of an anonymous self-report questionnaire survey. Subjects were 177 students who studied maternal nursing between 1999 and 2001. Valid responses were obtained from 171 of these subjects.
Factor analysis of the detailed evaluation of twenty-seven items indicated six factors of interest.Those six domains were I. Effects of relationship with teacher, II. Effects of learning debate skills, III. Effects of studying in small groups, IV. Teaching materials and references, V. Effects of comprehensive study approach, VI. Effects of burden of studying. Students were highly cognitive of the effects
of learning debate skills. Multiple regression analyses were perforrned, and it was found that the overall course evaluation was influenced significantly by three factors: the effects of learning debate skills, the effects of studying in small groups and the effects of relationship with teacher. The effects of learning debating skills in particular were found to have a significant influence on all three factors effecting overall course evaluation. These results indicate that the introduction of debate-based learning may be beneficial to students in general classroom study as well as in clinical nursing activities.Moreover, it was suggested that the influence of the teacher was a very important factor in group study.