Academic writing among first-term students in the nursing programme at the Swedish Red Cross University College − A description of a three-term transprofessional project in collaboration with the library and the student support unit at Södertörn University

Anna Stålberg


Background and objectives: The academization of the nursing education has emphasized the need for students to acquire academic literacies both for educational and clinical reasons. However, for long being a practical profession, nurse students do not always reflect on the importance of being academic literate. This aim of this article was to describe the teaching of introductory academic writing to first-term students in the Swedish Red Cross University College’s nursing programme, implemented as a transprofessional collaboration project involving the Swedish Red Cross University College and the library as well as the student support unit at Södertörn University.

Methods: A model was used for implementing teaching of academic literacies to first-term nursing students embedded in a discipline-specific course. The model consisted of two seminars, one introductory seminar focusing on academic writing and how to search for, read, appraise, and use research articles and one feedback seminar. Peer feedback was performed by the students. In between the seminars, the students began to work on their course assignment and later finalized the assignment using the feedback provided by teachers and peers.

Results: The transprofessional collaboration in teaching academic literacies was described as successful. Teachers and students found the embedding of academic writing in a subject-specific course as useful, although – from a student perspective – demanding and partly difficult. The provision of feedback was regarded as helpful and encouraged the students to finish their assignments. Although being a team of teachers, the large class sizes resulted in an extensive workload and stressful situations. Yet another challenge, important for the sustainability of the model, was to win support for teaching academic literacies among all teachers in the nursing programme.

Conclusions: The transprofessional collaboration when teaching academic literacies to first-term nursing students have indicated advantages and challenges, of which both are of importance to consider carefully in the further planning and implementation of the project.

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Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

ISSN 1925-4040 (Print)   ISSN 1925-4059 (Online)

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