NURS5012 : Clinical Assessment Tools Essay
Within clinical practice, nurses often use clinical assessment tools to aid health assessment. Clinical assessment tools are usually in the format of questionnaires which have been developed to assist in the assessment of a particular aspect of patient assessment that cannot be directly (objectively) assessed (such as the construct of pain, level of sedation, level of consciousness).
Such tools can be used for a variety of purposes but mostly to determine baseline characteristics, monitor improvement or deterioration in clinical status, to assess specific risks and to influence clinical decision making and subsequent management of patients. Understanding the evidence-base that supports or refutes the use of these tools in particular patient cohorts is important for individual patient assessment. The research basis for many of the tools, however, is often not understood by clinicians. The tools may be used to quantify aspects of a patient’s clinical presentation without knowing how accurately the tool is in assessing a particular construct (e.g. pain).
To complete this assessment, select one of the following clinical assessment tools:
- Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE)
- Wong-Baker Faces Pain Rating Scale
- Waterlow Pressure Ulcer Scale
- Australasian Triage Scale (ATS)
- Oral Assessment Guide (OAG)
- Behavioural Pain Scale (BPS)
- Clinical Opiate Withdrawal Scale (COWS)
In essay format, critically evaluate the reliability and validity of the chosen tool from the list above in relation to a specific clinical context and population. The essay should include:
- Description of your patient population and how this tool is or could be used in assessment of that population
- Description of the assessment tool and the context for which it was created.
With reference to validation literature, critically discuss the elements of reliability and validity of your chosen assessment tool. A minimum of three primary research articles must be included (you should include a brief justification for your choice of articles, e.g., Publication date, match with your clinical population, aim of paper).
Any review paper or meta-analysis articles should be retained for the intro or discussion section only.
Additionally, for this assessment, it is permissible to include older literature as the original validation study may be the most comprehensive. Where possible, include some recent studies (previous 3-5 years), and studies specific to your own patient population. While a minimum of 3 articles is required, if available, up to 5 should be included. If there are limited available articles, you should discuss this as a limitation in your essay.
- Try to discuss as many of the elements of reliability and validity (covered in course content) as you can.
- Where these reliability/validity elements have not been measured in included studies you should note/discuss this.
- The type of measurements studied may depend on the type of tool
- Draw a conclusion about the usefulness of the assessment tool for your clinical practice.
- Please refer to the marking criteria rubric below when preparing this assessment to understand how marks are earned
PubMed, The Cumulative Index of Nursing and Allied Health literature (CINAHL) and Medline are useful sources to locate the research evidence for this assessment.
Literature searching guide for CINAHL, Embase, Medline, Scopus, and PsycINFODownload Literature searching guide for CINAHL, Embase, Medline, Scopus, and PsycINFO
You must reference according to the guidelines set out in the APA 7th referencing guide.
If you choose to use EndNote, access the Library's Getting Started page
Please make sure your submitted assessments are formatted as follows:
font: use Calibri or Times New Roman in 11 - 12 point
double line spacing
margins: 2.5cm each side
use page numbers
do not list your name on the paper since it is anonymous marking. List your student ID number in the footer instead
If desired, there are many resources to assist you with your academic journey, including:
Assessment Support from the Library
You can also request to enrol in their "Writing in an Academic Style" Canvas page to complete learning modules at home
Online information about Writing skills
Be sure to appropriately paraphrase!
The Write Site Canvas module
Assistance with time management
Additionally, this blank synthesis table Download this blank synthesis tablemight be helpful in your assessment preparation but should not be included in your submission