Journal article 12784 views 5206 downloads
‘I AM A STAR’: a mnemonic for undertaking a mental state examination
Mental Health Practice, Volume: 21, Issue: 1, Pages: 21 - 26
Swansea University Author: Beryl Mansel
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The role of the nurse lecturer is to create a learning experience which facilitates the link between theory and practice. Programs designed to prepare nurses should offer a flexible approach to learning, and draw upon the full range of modern learning methods and modes of delivery. The use of simula...
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The role of the nurse lecturer is to create a learning experience which facilitates the link between theory and practice. Programs designed to prepare nurses should offer a flexible approach to learning, and draw upon the full range of modern learning methods and modes of delivery. The use of simulation is recommended as an effective method of teaching and learning. The ability to assess service users’ mental health needs is one of the most important skills of a mental health nurse. The precise and appropriate gathering of information and observations of the service user enables the nurse to undertake effective care and treatment planning. It is therefore essential for students to be provided with the opportunities to learn such skills and knowledge in a classroom environment.A teaching workshop was developed with the aim of student learning how to produce a succinct and coherent observational assessment which summarises the service users’ mental state in the here and now. Simulated patients were briefed of overt signs and symptoms of mental health conditions and mental health lecturers undertook the role of assessing nurses. The students adopt an observer role - defined as external to the simulation.In order to enhance the student learning and engagement, the use of an observer tool was developed. This easy to recall mnemonic, namely the ‘I AM A STAR’ framework based upon the Mental Status Examination was utilised by students as an observational assessment of the simulated patient. The student evaluation of the teaching workshop identified a creative and innovative teaching session. Creative strategies promote active engagement and student satisfaction, which supports the journey of the student nurses from novice to qualified professionals.
Mental State Examination, mental health, nursing education, observational assessment, simulated patient
College of Human and Health Sciences