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Visual methods in health dialogues: a qualitative study of public health nurse practice in schools

Citation

Laholt, H and Guillemin, M and McLeod, K and Olsen, RE and Lorem, GF, Visual methods in health dialogues: a qualitative study of public health nurse practice in schools, Journal of Advanced Nursing pp. 3070-3078. ISSN 0309-2402 (2017) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd

DOI: doi:10.1111/jan.13371

Abstract

Aims: We aimed to explore how using visual methods might improve or complicate the dynamics of the health dialogue between public health nurses (PHNs) and school pupils. This was done from the perspective of PHNs, specifically examining how they understood their role and practice as a PHN and the application of visual methods in this practice.

Background: The health dialogue is a method used by PHNs in school nursing in Norway. In this practice, there can be communicative barriers between pupils and PHNs. Investigating how PHNs understand their professional practice can lead to ways of addressing these communicative barriers, which can affect pupil satisfaction and achievement of health-related behaviours in the school context. Specifically, the use of visual methods by PHNs may address these communicative barriers.

Design: The research design was qualitative, using focus groups combined with visual methods.

Methods: We conducted focus group interviews using a semi-structured discussion guide and visual methods with five groups of PHNs (n = 31) working in northern Norwegian school health services. The data were collected during January and February 2016. Discussions were audio recorded, transcribed and coded into themes and sub-themes using systematic text condensation and drawings were analysed using interpretive engagement, a method of visual analysis.

Findings: Drawings and focus group discussions showed that PHNs perceived their professional practice as primarily a relational praxis. The PHNs used a variety of visual methods as part of the health dialogue with school pupils. This active use of visualization worked to build and strengthen relations when words were inadequate and served to enhance the flexible and relational practice employed by the PHNs.

Conclusions: PHNs used different kinds of visualization methods to establish relations with school pupils, especially when verbalization by the pupils was difficult. PHNs were aware of both the benefits and challenges of using visualization with school pupils in health education. We recommend the use of visual methods in schools because they are useful for PHNs, other health professionals and teachers working with children and young people in developing relations, particularly where verbal communication may be a challenge.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:adolescents, health dialogue, public health nurse, school nursing, visual methods, visualisation
Research Division:Studies in Human Society
Research Group:Sociology
Research Field:Sociological Methodology and Research Methods
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding Knowledge through Studies of Human Society
Author:McLeod, K (Dr Kim McLeod)
ID Code:123777
Year Published:2017
Deposited By:Office of the School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2018-01-25
Last Modified:2018-04-20
Downloads:0

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