M.C. Ruiz-Grao1, M. García-Moreno2, A. Hernández-Martínez3, M.L. Amo-Saus2, M. Molina-Alarcón4, J. Rodríguez-Almagro5, F. García-Sevilla2, A. Rubio Álvarez6, M. Donate-Manzanares7, M. Molina-Alarcón1

1IDINE. Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha (SPAIN)
2E.S.Ingenieros Industriales. Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha (SPAIN)
3IDINE. Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha. Gerencia de Atención Integrada de Alcázar de San Juan. (SPAIN)
4IES Europa. Madrid (SPAIN)
5Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha. Gerencia de Atención Integrada de Ciudad Real (SPAIN)
6Hospital de Torrejón de Ardoz (SPAIN)
7Hospital Virgen de la Luz (SPAIN)
The creation of the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) establishes a system of degrees whose top level includes Degree studies with syllabi that contain a high teaching load of a practical nature in Health Sciences studies.

At our University, the compulsory Biochemisty subject is taught in the first year of Nursing Degree studies. This subject is considered an important subject in curricular terms, which allows future Nursing students to acquire knowledge about the composition and structure of the human body, and about the physico-chemical processes performed in its cell structures, and how the human organism works. Part of this learning is offered during laboratory practical session when students have the chance to analytically determine body fluids, among others. It is interesting for students as it goes beyond the theoretical concepts taught in master classes.
Thus it is considered interesting to know the expectations that students have before their first practical laboratory class, their degree of satisfaction afterwards, and the improvement proposals that they consider interesting.

To know our Nursing Degree students’ expectations before their first practical laboratory class, where technical nursing knowledge is offered, and their degree of satisfaction and a series of improvement proposals after this class.

A quanti-qualitative study about 107 first-year Nursing Degree students faced with their first practical laboratory class as part of the Biochemistry subject, during which a series of usual nursing techniques were given (measuring parameters in blood and urine).
With a questionnaire that we devised, and prior to giving the practical class, students’ expectations of the practical class were evaluated. After this session, their degree of satisfaction and if their expectations were fulfilled were evaluated. Students also suggested a series of improvements. The questionnaire included closed and open (qualitative) questions, and socio-demographic data.

The mean score that students gave to the practical class before participating in it was 8.21 points (SD±0.98), which rose to 9.18 points (SD±0.88) after participating (p<0.001). Practicals not only equalled students’ expectations, but surpassed them and their degree of satisfaction was high. One improvement proposal stood out, that of including more material resources and techniques to perform practical sessions. Students stated that the most interesting aspect for them was to undertake the techniques, whose application they considered useful for them when they are nurses in the future.

Students’ expectations of their first practical laboratory session that centred on Nursing techniques were high, and their degree of satisfaction remained high after this session. The improvement proposals made by students were valuable and must be taken into account when planning syllabi and teaching practical classes.