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Professional self-confidence in health education: A multi-method study using the Rasch measurement model

Hecimovich, M. (2013) Professional self-confidence in health education: A multi-method study using the Rasch measurement model. In: 28th Annual Research Forum (WAIER): Research Informing Reform, 10 August 2013, The University of Notre Dame, Fremantle.


Health professionals in medicine, chiropractic, and physiotherapy require high-level knowledge and skills in their assessment and management of patients. This is important when communicating with patients and applying assessment and treatment procedures. Prior to embarking on professional practice, it is imperative for a beginner practitioner to acquire optimal situation-specific levels of self-confidence. In order to purposely foster professional self-confidence during university education and clinical internships, it is critical to use instruments that are reliable, valid and sensitive enough to measure change in perceived professional self-confidence and determine the factors that contribute to change.

This research utilised a multi-method approach with the conceptualisation, development and psychometric analysis of two professional self-confidence scales, grounded in the Rasch measurement model and examined students’ accounts on the development of professional self-confidence during their internships. Through its in-depth examination of the development of professional self-confidence, the research makes a unique contribution to clinical education. The development of the scales can identify students who require additional help, guide curriculum development and, used with objective measures of competence, identify under or over-confident students. The multi-method design allowed for the identification of factors which affect professional confidence and was enriched by insights into students’ clinical experience.

Publication Type: Conference Item
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Education
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