Effects of diagnosis training software on the diagnostic fluency and self-confidence of school psychology graduate trainees
Ari S. Yares, Temple University, United States
Temple University . Awarded
The purpose of this study was to determine if simulation was an effective means of increasing diagnostic fluency and self-confidence in clinical skills in school psychology trainees. Thirty-seven masters and doctoral level school psychology trainees, divided into two groups, used the Diagnosis Training Simulator (DTS), a web-based simulator of the diagnostic process. Users were presented with a referral question and allowed to choose from a variety of assessment tools, each with a designated virtual time. DTS recorded the accuracy of each diagnosis and the amount of virtual time used as a measure of diagnostic fluency. Pre and postmeasures of self-confidence were taken using a modified version of the Trait Sport-Confidence Inventory developed by Vealy (1986) to reflect self-confidence in school psychology clinical skills. The experimental group used DTS five times while the control group used the website at the beginning and end of the study as a pre- and post-test. Analysis of the results indicated that there were no significant differences in the changes of diagnostic fluency and self-confidence between the experimental group and the control group. Further investigation of simulations that more closely model the diagnostic process is needed as well as more accurate measures of diagnostic fluency.
Yares, A.S. Effects of diagnosis training software on the diagnostic fluency and self-confidence of school psychology graduate trainees. Ph.D. thesis, Temple University.
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