Midwives throughout the world practice in vastly different geographic areas, socioeconomic contexts, and with a variety of resources. Though midwives attend the majority of births across the globe, their role and educational opportunities are not standardized. Training in crucial skills, such as neonatal resuscitation, is often inadequate or inaccessible to midwives with limited literacy in developing countries, such as Guatemala. While the Guatemalan government has offered midwifery training since 1955, the training has failed to change midwife knowledge because they are taught with written material in Spanish, even though many midwives have limited literacy and speak Mayan dialects. More information is needed about how midwives best learn. This project aims to explore learning styles of midwives in the context of neonatal resuscitation training with a larger goal of ultimately decreasing neonatal mortality. The project was conducted at Refuge International Health Clinic in San Raymundo, Guatemala, which is a suburban area located approximately 30 kilometers from Guatemala City and the project included 12 midwives with 1 to 46 years of midwifery practice experience. Participants reported a range of literacy from none to an ability to read and write, and education levels ranged from elementary school through university. By means of a select-all-that-apply question added to a general demographic survey, the preferred learning styles of the lay midwives were assessed. Response options to the question, "What methods best serve your learning?" included color drawings, black and white drawings, verbal instruction, demonstration, storytelling, written instruction, hands-on practice, verbally repeating what you learned to someone else, acting out what you learned, writing down what you learned, and/or watching a video. Participants could select all methods that applied. While no one learning style was preferred by all participants, color drawings and verbal instruction were among the top choices. Due to the lack of clear patterns in the data, assessing group learning styles independently and tailoring educational methods to the unique needs of participants may be preferable to a more generalized approach.
University / Institution: University of Utah
Format: In Person
SESSION D (3:30-5:00PM)
Area of Research: Nursing
Faculty Mentor: Kimberly Garcia