Osteopathy is now taught across the world, but each school has different teaching and learning strategies that may influence the preparedness of students for practice in different ways.
To investigate levels of the satisfaction with the learning environment and the preparedness to practise from the perspective of osteopathic students. The study compares full-time schools in three different countries to analyse relationships between learning environment and preparedness.
A web-based questionnaire using a five-point Likert scale (strongly agree, agree, uncertain, disagree, strongly disagree) was sent by e-mail to all final year students of the British School of Osteopathy (BSO-UK), Accademia Italiana Osteopatia Tradizionale (AIOT-Italy) and Centre Européen d'Enseignement Supérieur de l'Ostéopathie (CEESO-France).
The response rate was 58% for the BSO (n = 51), 100% for the AIOT (n = 12) and 80% for the CEESO (n = 63). The AIOT students perceived a better learning environment than CEESO and BSO students, while CEESO students felt more prepared than AIOT and BSO students. Statistically significant associations were found between learning environment and preparedness.
Small classes may be partly responsible for the perception of a better learning environment. This study also highlighted that the learning environment may be partly responsible for the perceived differences in preparedness.
Emanuele Luciani is a qualified osteopath and physiotherapist. He qualified in physiotherapy at the university of Rome "La Sapienza" in 2006 and in osteopathy at the "British School of Osteopathy" in 2012. His research in Osteopathic student satisfaction and preparedness to practice: a comparative study has been published in the international Journal of Osteopathic Medicine