Emotions and clinical learning in an interprofessional outpatient clinic: A focused ethnographic study

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During the last decade, there has been a growing recognition that emotions can be of critical importance for
students’ learning and cognitive development. The aimof this study was to investigate the self-reported and
the observed relationship of: activity-, outcome-, epistemic-, and social emotions’ role in students’ learning in
a clinical interprofessional context. We conducted a focused ethnography study of medical and nursing
students’ clinical placement in an interprofessional orthopaedic outpatient clinic where the students
performed consultations with patients, together. We used content analysis to analyse observational notes
and interviews. Two themes were identified. First self-regulated learning with two sub-themes: unexpected
incident and reflection. The second theme was cooperative learning with three sub-themes: equality, communication,
and role distribution. Participants only reported activating emotions. Negative emotions often
occurred when the students together experienced an incongruity between their cognitive capability and the
type of task. However, because of the possibility for students to call for a supervisor, the negative activating
emotions often, in connection with reflection on the incident, resulted in a positive emotion due to the
students’ awareness of having acquired new knowledge and capability, and thereby, learning. It is important
to be aware of the close interplay between emotions and clinical learning in an interprofessional context.
The learning environment must include easy access for supervision.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Interprofessional Care
Pages (from-to)57-65
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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