The Influence of Distress on Knowledge Transfer for Men Newly Diagnosed with Prostate Cancer
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- Hovey, R.B., Cuthbertson, K.E.S., Birnie, K.A. et al. J Canc Educ (2012) 27: 540. doi:10.1007/s13187-012-0343-2
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The purpose of this inquiry was to evaluate the efficacy of prostate cancer education sessions. Implementation of 3-h patient educational sessions was intended to provide men newly diagnosed with localized prostate cancer, who face difficult and complex decisions, information about potential treatment options. Fifty-seven men completed the distress thermometer assessment before the education session to assess baseline levels of distress. Seven of the men were interviewed post-educational session to determine the degree of knowledge transfer from the session. This study explored the efficacy of the patients’ learning experience using an interpretive phenomenological research approach. Resulting data revealed that these patients, as adult learners, were distressed and that, despite the availability of pertinent medical content, the subject material was not learned as intended or readily understood. The conclusion drawn from this preliminary applied educational research study was that the education model used was less than efficacious at ensuring that sufficient knowledge transfer was achieved for medical treatment decision-making processes. These findings suggest a need for future research to explore the application of adult learning theories and approaches that may offer enhanced knowledge translation and transfer for prostate cancer education programs.