• Senior Athletic Training Students’ Perceptions and Self-Reported Behaviors of Evidence-Based Practice

      Schneider, Gregory P. (2011-03-17)
      Title: Senior Athletic Training Student‟s Perceptions and Self-Reported Behaviors of Evidence-Based Practice Context: Entry-level athletic training education is currently transitioning to include evidence-based practice (EBP) into their curriculums to continue to establish athletic training as a prestigious allied health profession. Objective: To determine senior athletic training student (SATS) perceptions of EBP and examine the self-reported behaviors of EBP to gain insight into the instructional methods currently used to educate athletic training students in EBP as the method of delivering care to patients. Design: Grounded theory study Setting: Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education accredited undergraduate athletic training programs. Participants: Thirteen senior athletic training students [11=female, 2=male, currently completing their last semester/quarter of their athletic training education program (ATEP)] were interviewed to discover their perceptions, self-reported behaviors of EBP. Data Collection and Analysis: SATS perceptions and self-reported behaviors of EBP were discovered and explored qualitatively using grounded theory methodology. Constant comparison and coding allowed theories to be developed. Peer debriefing and multiple analyst triangulation evaluated the emerging theories to establish trustworthiness. Results: The analysis revealed that SATS have a positive perception of utilizing research to guide or supplement their clinical practices. The emerging theories demonstrated that the SATS have knowledge of how to use EBP when providing care to their patients. The perceived instructional methods focused on acquiring medical literature, with slight emphasis on appraising and applying it into clinical practice. Some ATEP assignments required SATS to acquire and appraise medical literature, which in turn some of the SATS were able to use in their clinical practices. SATS also expressed acquiring medical literature on their own to address a problem in their clinical practices, but the SATS did not appraise the found medical literature nor discuss it with their patients. The SATS did express confidence in their ability to communicate to their patients and establish trust by educating their patients. Conclusions: The SATS interviewed attained a scholastic knowledge of EBP. Other medical professions re-structured their curricula to have students use EBP. The changes in athletic training curriculum have allowed athletic training students to continue the incorporation of EBP. The instructional methods, described by the SATS, used to teach EBP do not appear to be as structured as other medical professions. Through the continued integration of EBP education into all levels of athletic training education, the profession can continue to enhance itself as a prestigious allied health profession.