Predictors of student success in the Army Medical Department (AMEDD) Licensed Practical Nurse training program (91WM6) as identified by expert nurse educators, instructors, and administrators at Fort Sam Houston Post, San Antonio, Texas
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The U.S. Army Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) dates back to the fall of 1947 and evolved from severe professional nursing shortages of World War II. Today, as in the past, to sustain U.S. Army readiness the highly medically trained combat soldier must possess skills and competency of an LPN, which is a result of successful completion of a 52-week 91WM6 training program. The purpose of this two-part descriptive study includes evaluation of quantitative and qualitative data. The Delphi technique and a retrospective student record review were utilized to gather data. Dependent variables included student demographics such as age, rank, gender, years of military experience, marital status, prior education and medical related experience, Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) scores, specifically Skilled Technical (ST) and General Technical (GT), students?? interpretation of stressors of military life, occupational goals, number of college units attained, number of examinations failed and physical fitness tests failed, Article 15??s administered, and counseling. The independent variable was successful completion of the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nursing (NCLEX) examination on the first attempt. Major research findings of this study included: 1. The research revealed higher pass rates for a private first class and specialist, as compared to lower pass rates of corporals and sergeants. Additionally, soldier students in the study who had completed at least one college unit (had attended college), had a 92% pass rate as compared to those who had not completed any additional education or college after high school (75.0%). It is suggested that prior experience may improve entry cognitive skills that enhance academic performance along with the student??s achievement. 2. The research revealed that those soldier students who tended to have higher GT and ST scores failed program tests significantly fewer times. 3. Based on the results of the expert opinions of the panelists (Delphi) who participated in the study, the highest-rated predictors in completing the course were positive study habits, demonstrating diligence, and motivation. For predictors related to passing the NCLEX-PN, the highest rate was the ability to think critically and specifically preparing for the NCLEX examination.