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Physiotherapy undergraduate students’ experiences of bachelor’s thesis examination

Journal article
Authors Kristofer Bjerså
M Shams
Monika Fagevik Olsén
Published in European Journal of Physiotherapy
Volume 21
Issue 1
Pages 56-63
ISSN 2167-9169
Publication year 2019
Published at Institute of Clinical Sciences, Department of Surgery
Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Health and Rehabilitation
Institute of Clinical Sciences
Pages 56-63
Language en
Keywords assessment, Bachelor thesis, examination, healthcare education, physical therapy
Subject categories Physiotherapy


© 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group Background: The aim of the study was to explore undergraduate physiotherapist students´ experiences of the examination sessions of their bachelor´s theses. Methods: Qualitative, semistructured interviews with Swedish physiotherapy students from two universities after the examination of their theses. During these oral examinations, the theses are presented and discussed with fellow students who act as reviewers, the audience and the examiner. The interviews were analysed according to the content analysis. Results: Thirteen interviews were performed. The analysis resulted in three categories:  • Beneficial; the examination session was seen as a positive learning experience, with students showing an interest in further studies.  • Demotivating; contained experiences of unfairness and unnecessary aspects.  • Improvement; suggestions were made based on the experiences of being present at examination sessions with both beneficial and destructive elements. Conclusion: Students perceived the examination session as promoting learning, giving insight into scientific work, and as a forum with possibilities for improvement of their thesis. On the other hand, it could be destructive for relationships when fellow students acted unfair during the review and the sessions need to be prepared and practiced. Better consensus and standardised settings for the lecturers acting as examiners and supervisors are needed in order to have a proper and fair assessment.

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