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Evaluation of the personal development profile in higher education: An explorative study.

Head, Kevin S; Johnston, Jaqueline H


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Kev Head
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Jaqueline H Johnston


Personal Development Profiles (PDPs) have been an important and necessary feature of United Kingdom (UK) Higher Education for more than a decade. There is significant agreement as to their core purpose and their key features are of relevance to higher education institutions internationally, irrespective of whether an equivalent formal system or process is in place. The aim of this exploratory study was to evaluate the use of PDPs within a Child Health Nursing Programme in a UK University, looking at the experiences of both teaching staff and of students coming to the end of their three year programme of study. A convenience sample of final year pre-registration Child Health Nursing students and their lecturers was used for the purposes of this study with mixed methods of collection used to generate the required data. A survey was conducted with questionnaires. Following the analysis of the questionnaires, a discussion group was undertaken with the students. A series of questions was developed to guide this discussion. The structure offered by the system of PDPs evaluated here was seen to offer much in the way of potential value. Staff saw it as offering direction, a tool for discussion and a clear time and reason for meeting their students. Students similarly appreciated the structure it provided, but did describe it as somewhat repetitive. These findings were clearly of use in terms of evaluating this ongoing work, but also offer the potential to inform the work of other educational institutions.


Head, K. S., & Johnston, J. H. (2012). Evaluation of the personal development profile in higher education: An explorative study. Nurse Education Today, 32, 857-861.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 22, 2011
Publication Date 2012-11
Deposit Date Nov 10, 2015
Print ISSN 0260-6917
Electronic ISSN 1532-2793
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 32
Pages 857-861
Keywords Personal development planning; Nurse Education;
Higher education;
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