Dyspraxia in clinical education: a review

Walker, Eleanor, Shaw, Sebastian, Price, Jim, Reed, Malcolm and Anderson, John (2018) Dyspraxia in clinical education: a review. Clinical Teacher, 15 (2). pp. 98-103. ISSN 1743-4971

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The stereotype of the student with dyspraxia as ‘clumsy and disorganised’ may cause clinical teachers to be concerned about the student’s performance in a clinical environment. However, if it is understood that dyspraxic students possess many strengths, as well as weaknesses, it may be that some stereotypical myths may be dispelled and more effective support offered to them. This review considers the research surrounding the experiences of students and health professionals with dyspraxia within higher education (HE), alongside the personal experiences of EW, in order to inform the development of clinical teachers in respect of their support for learners with dyspraxia.

A literature review produced five relevant articles. Four studies focussed on HE students and one on doctors. A significant theme was that dyspraxia impaired learning new skills. Doctors with dyspraxia tended not to disclose their condition, due to fear of stigmatisation and negative effects on their career. Positive attributes of dyspraxia included resilience and determination to succeed. Two main adaptations to dyspraxia were highlighted; a ‘difference’ view focussing on individuals’ strengths, and a ‘medical/deficit’ view, focussing on their weaknesses and others’ negative perceptions.

Discussions and Recommendations
It is important for clinical educators to understand and support students with dyspraxia – as clinical environments can be particularly difficult for them. Dyspraxia has both positive and negative effects. Here we discuss the findings of previous studies in the context of EWAA’s personal experiences. We also present a series of practical recommendations, whilst recognising that more research is required to document their impact in clinical education.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Division of Medical Education
Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Global Health and Infection
Research Centres and Groups: Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Research Group
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General) > R735 Medical education
Depositing User: Esme Acton-Stewart
Date Deposited: 20 Oct 2017 10:56
Last Modified: 22 Jan 2020 11:53
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/70489

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