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Qualitative analysis of a Self Administered Motivational Instrument (SAMI): implications for students, teachers and researchers

By Tim Duffy, Muir Houston and Russell Rimmer


The SAMI (Self Administered Motivational Instrument) is a low-cost intervention that uses motivational interviewing, aspects of the RASI learning-style instrument and analytical decision making to assist students’ to reflect on approaches to study and motivate change. It is a self-help guide which can be completed within 30 minutes.\ud \ud The impact of the SAMI on deep and strategic approaches to study and student attainment was established earlier (Duffy and Rimmer, 2008). These results were based on a quantitative analysis of data using SPSS and AMOS. Students who completed the SAMI increased their strategic approach to study and had a higher chance of obtaining the top two grades of A or B1 in assessments. Further, a small to moderate effect size of 0.32 was noted in changes in strategic scores on the RASI.\ud \ud The current paper concerns qualitative SAMI information gathered from 88 first-level, pre-registration nursing students studying at a university in the west of Scotland. Their SAMIs were transcribed and a thematic analysis carried out using NVivo, with independent- and multiple checking employed in an effort to ensure reliability and validity. Further, Prochaska and Di Clemente’s cycle of change and changes in students’ RASI scores were used to interpret students’ qualitative responses. Groups of themes were identified and within grouped responses it became apparent that: some students do not want to change; some want to change but cannot; and some make considerable changes to time allocation in relation to study, family, work and social life.\ud \ud It is concluded that while the SAMI is an innovative, cost effective method of encouraging students to think through the process of change in relation to their approach to study, consideration should be given to including a preliminary section that assesses students preparedness for change. Moreover, the results of this current research suggest that a comparison with SAMI material provided by post-registration nurses studying for degrees could Prochaska and Di Clemente’s reveal substantial differences

Publisher: Taylor and Francis
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