Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
This investigation is a descriptive study designed to evaluate the effectiveness of the Daly-Miller Writing-Apprehension Scale (DMWAS) and the Student Exposure Survey (SES) in describing entry level characteristics of students entering Methodist College of Nursing and Allied Healt (NMC). Results from the study will be used to design a student outcomes-based evaluation component for a Writing Across the Curriculum program. The following assumptions were tested: 1. NMC students, who have chosen careers in health care, will report higher apprehension than University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) students, who are entering a variety of other occupations. 2. Exposure to specific writing strategies will vary according to demographic groups. 3. Results of the DMWAS and SES data will be useful in designing baseline graphics from which student outcomes· criteria can be established and against which outcomes-based assessments can be performed in the future. The method of the study was to administer the DMWAS and the SES to two classes of Introduction to Health Sciences at NMC and to three classes of English 115 at UNO. Total apprehension scores and subscores representing survey items clustered into categories of confidence, evaluation, and enjoyment of writing were calculated for each student. An independent t test was used to compare scores of NMC students to those of UNO students. Scores from the SES for NMC and UNO students were also compared by t test, as were demographics with only two alternatives (sex, high school graduation status). All other demographics were compared by a one-way analysis of variance. Results of the study indicated no significant difference in total mean scores or in cluster scores for the DMWAS between NMC health professions students and UNO students. Results indicated no significant difference in SES scores between NMC and UNO students nor among demographic groups. DMWAS test results yielded data for designing individual student writing apprehension profiles, class writing apprehension profiles, class writing apprehension profiles by cluster scores, and a total group apprehension profile. SES results yielded data for designing a profile of writing experiences of students entering NMC. The study concluded that the DMWAS and the SES are useful in measuring entry level characteristics of students entering NMC and that they will be included in the student outcomes assessment component of the Writing Across the Curriculum program.
Haunton, Gladys E., "Measuring entry characteristics of writing program participants: Apprehension and previous exposure to specific writing strategies." (1992). Student Work. 3006.