Mathematics Anxiety and Mathematics Self-efficacy in Relation to Medication Calculation Performance in Nurses Page: 48
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There is apparently no clear standard concerning what constitutes mathematical
competency. Several issues related to mathematical competency are validation procedures, actual
test used, scoring criteria, outcomes when passing is not achieved, and remediation procedures.
Polifroni et al. (2003) indicate that acute care agencies required specific passing scores ranging
from 70% to 100% and most required a score of 80% and above. All acute care institutions
reported validation of medication calculation skills prior to medication administration using an
institution-designed test with no attention to grade level of mathematics and test-taking skills.
The institutions provided remediation with some practice problems before repeating the same
test; however, they did not report additional testing after initial passing of the examination.
Hospital educators are concerned with new graduates' abilities regarding medication
administration; however, most are not clear in expectations and do not address the ongoing
mathematical skills in regards to medication calculations (Calliari, 1995; Polifroni et al., 2003).
It has been recommended that nurses who calculate infusions have their competency periodically
checked as often as annually (McMullan et al., 2010; Pietsch, 2005; Polifroni et al., 2005).
Harne-Britner et al. (2006) found that nurses and nursing students had limited medication
calculation skills and showed significant improvement of scores on a 20-item medication
calculation test with various interventions. The interventions were a 30-minute classroom tutorial
session, a self-study using a published workbook, a self-study using their own reference, and no
intervention. The average pretest score for the senior baccalaureate nursing students was 15.9,
and the posttest average was 17.4; the average pretest score for practicing nurses was 15.5, and
the posttest average was 18.6. No statistically significant differences were noted; however, both
groups significantly improved test scores (p < 0.01).The RNs posttest scores improved regardless
of the type of educational strategy used although none were statistically significant. There was a
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Melius, Joyce. Mathematics Anxiety and Mathematics Self-efficacy in Relation to Medication Calculation Performance in Nurses, dissertation, May 2012; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115119/m1/56/: accessed July 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .