Date of Award

Fall 11-15-2021

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Respiratory Therapy

First Advisor

Dr. Douglas S. Gardenhire

Second Advisor

Dr. Rachel Culbreth

Third Advisor

Dr. Kyle Brandenberger


BACKGROUND: Preceptors play an important role in clinical education for the next generation of respiratory therapy students. To improve respiratory therapy clinical educations, clinical instructors' behavioral characteristics that affect students' performance must be thoroughly evaluated. Therefore, there is a growing need to better address what students consider the most and least important effectiveness characteristics of clinical instructors in respiratory therapy clinical education. PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to evaluated and perceived the effectiveness of behavioral teaching characteristics of clinical instructors by interns and undergraduate respiratory therapy students. METHODS: The study utilized a descriptive cross-sectional survey. The survey was distributed to interns and undergraduate students enrolled in an accredited respiratory therapy program at urban universities and hospitals located in Saudi Arabia. The survey consisted of 35 teaching behaviors presented on a five-point Likert scale according to importance. The collected data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and Mann-Whitney U test. RESULTS: Thirty-six students responded with a response rate of 63%. Interns were 50% of the total sample, with females and males equally split at 50%. Fifty percent of respondents studied were undergraduate, of which females accounted for 36.2% and males 13.8%. The study findings indicate that the evaluation of interns and undergraduate students of the most and least important behavioral characteristics are similar, but both grasp the ordered rank of importance differently. Intern students ranked “Facilitate student’s awareness of their Professional responsibility” as the most effectiveness characteristic with a mean score value M = 4.92 and standard deviation (S.D ±.39). While undergraduate students ranked the behavioral characteristic “Encourage students to feel free to ask questions or ask for help” as the most effectiveness with a mean score value M = 4.72 and standard deviation (S.D ± .49). Additionally, intern students rank the characteristic “Demonstrate engaging style of bedside teaching” as the least effectiveness with a mean score value M = 3.14 and standard deviation (S.D ± 1.0). While undergraduate students ranked the behavioral characteristic “Be realistic in expectations of students’ performance” as the least effectiveness with a mean score value M = 3.56 and standard deviation (S.D ± .93). CONCLUSION: Although the ratings of interns and undergraduate students were similar, mean scores revealed a change in the ranking of effectiveness teaching characteristic evaluation. This could be due to the fact that students' evaluations vary as they progress through clinical training or educational experience. In the end, the findings of this study will enable respiratory therapy clinical instructors to evaluate themselves based on the evaluations of interns and undergraduate students.

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