Factors associated with undergraduate students’ academic and clinical performance success in an innovative nursing curriculum: a mixed-methods study

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Background: Research exploring factors that influence nursing students’ academic and clinical performance success prior to entry to practice is scarce.
Objective: To identify factors influencing the academic and clinical performance of undergraduate nursing students throughout the course.
Design: Mixed-methods study utilising a retrospective cohort and a qualitative study.
Setting: A Higher Education Institution in Melbourne, Australia.
Participants: Longitudinal existing data of nursing undergraduate students who commenced in 2017 (n=176) and 2018 (n=76) and two focus groups with final year nursing students were analysed.
Methods: Multivariate linear regression was used to determine predictor factors of academic and clinical performance. Variables include entry cohort (with no previous nursing qualification vs diploma of nursing), admission category
(domestic vs international), campus (metropolitan vs outer metropolitan) and secondary school (year 12) results. Academic and clinical outcome measures were assessed using the weighted average mark of theoretical and clinical
units. Two focus group discussions were conducted and thematically analysed.
Results: More than two-third of students were aged 18-20 years and mainly female. Almost 20% of the participants were
international. Students with higher secondary school (year 12) results and studying at the outer metropolitan campus
achieved a higher academic performance while international students had significantly lower academic performance compared to domestic students. Students with a previous diploma of nursing and international students had lower clinical performance. Students identified a comprehensive orientation, interactive curriculum, formal and informal supports and inspiring educators as influencing their performance.
Conclusions: A supportive educational environment with an interactive curriculum may enhance students’ academic and clinical performance. Furthermore, targeted interventions for international students, those with a lower secondary school (year 12) results, and with diploma of nursing may increase academic and clinical performance.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021

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