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Self-assessment is the ability to critically examine oneself and appraise professional strengths and weaknesses, and then use that analysis to plan for continued growth and development. Students must be self-directed learners and initiate self-directed seeking behavior to take responsibility for their own learning. This type of learning process involves students in the assessment process where they can learn to make judgments concerning their own work.

With the purpose of describing the self-assessment experience in first year students of Nursing Degree, this study conducted an experimental design comparing the effect of self-assessment check list in an academic activity such as the completion of a scientific report. 65 first year students of Nursing Degree, distributed in 21 working groups carried out a scientific report related to a subject of study. The students had a checklist that evaluated the format of the report presented. Moreover, they also carried out a self-assessment of the group work competence.

The results revealed that responsibility had a significant impact on students’ academic performance and perceived learning experience. However, this experience does not offer a substantial improvement in the academic results of the students.

In summary, in this study we explore how a self-assessment of the work allows a reflection of the learning process of the students. In addition, our reflections on how students became involved with active learning strategies revealed that more specificity was needed in the precise instructions given to students in the development of the reports, and especially in the way they performed their work in group, being able to detect and solve problems between them.