Mathematics Anxiety and Mathematics Self-efficacy in Relation to Medication Calculation Performance in Nurses Page: 53
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the poorly written order issue, while automated dosage systems and satellite pharmacy systems
are initiatives to decrease the medication distribution issues.
One's problem-solving ability can be influenced by the environment as well as one's own
innate ability. Grandell-Niemi et al. (2001) found a statistically significant correlation between
results on a medication calculation test and confidence in the nurse's mathematics skills (rS .427
and p < 0.01). They also found that the nurses who did calculations more often and attended
updates had more confidence and performed better on the medication calculation test. As
discussed in previous sections nurse are not proficient at medication calculations. The problem
may be inadequate basic mathematic skills. Roykenes and Larsen (2010) studied 116
baccalaureate nursing students and determined that there was a relationship between previous
mathematic likes/dislikes and self-assessment of mathematic ability. An additional finding
indicated that the student's requirement of earning 100% on the test was anxiety producing, and
the anxiety was higher for students who had done poorly in mathematics prior to college. The
limited mathematical skills may be related to poor role models, inadequate critical thinking
skills, or inadequate practice. McMullan et al. (2010) investigated the drug calculation ability of
nurses and found that most of their sample worked in primary care did not perform IV
calculations often and seemed to get "rusty"; they concluded that nurses need to practice
calculations and double-check answers. In order to prevent loss of skills they suggest that regular
practice and assessment be performed to reinforce learning and mastery.
Past experiences in school and encouragement from others may increase or limit the use
of long-term memory for solving current problems. A person's previous mathematics learning
may also influence medication calculation performance. Memory allows nurses to use their
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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/m1/61/: accessed March 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .