Prioritizing Factors Affecting Students' Satisfaction with Educational Quality in Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences (2011-2012)

Document Type: Original Article

Authors

1 Environmental health department, Faculty of health, Kermanshah University of medical Sciences, Kermanshah, IRAN

2 Faculty of paramedical sciences, Kermanshah University of medical Sciences, IRAN

3 3- Occupational health department, Faculty of health, Kermanshah University of medical Sciences, Kermanshah, IRAN

Abstract

Background: Determining satisfaction level helps the development and improvement of universities. This study was designed to investigate satisfaction level and prioritize factors affecting students' satisfaction with educational quality in Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences.
Methods: This is a descriptive-analytical study. The data gathering tool was a researcher made questionnaire consisted of 54 questions covering different fields regarding students’ satisfaction. Subjects were 400 intern students of Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences. Sampling was performed by stratified random method. Significance level was 0.05.
 Results: Students' satisfaction with classroom physical conditions and educational aids was moderate to good (3.11±1.71), while laboratory and practice rooms was moderate to low (2.91±1.07). Also, satisfaction with the educational services was moderate (3.02±1.11), with field training and internship, was moderate to low (2.94±1.21), and with teaching methods it was moderate to low (3.12±1.11). According to the results of this study, the first priority is library resources and internet access. Results showed that there is a significant difference in most criteria (p<0.05), but no significant difference was observed in satisfaction level with internship among different degrees. Also, there was no significant difference between females and males regarding satisfaction level with classroom physical conditions, internship and library resources.
Also, results showed that there is a significant difference in satisfaction level between students of different faculties (p=0.001) and different degrees (p=0.001).
 Conclusion: To improve students' satisfaction level, more emphasis must be put on library resources and internet,  laboratory and practice rooms, field training and internship, educational services, classroom physical conditions and educational aids, and teaching methods, respectively.

Keywords


INTRODUCTION

Customer-focused ideas have been introduced to different fields of health, treatment and education for two decades. Today, customer’s idea provides a basis to evaluate processes and a method to enable people involved in service providing and decision making (1). In knowledge-based organizations, knowing the method of service providing is one of the most fundamental mechanisms of management and is of great importance. Customer satisfaction makes these organizations dynamic and promotes organizational goals (2). This fact is considered in the customer-oriented approach; the key element is to focus on the customer and quality (3). According to this approach, fulfilling customers’ needs is considered as the final result of goods and services, and it has seven criteria which “customer satisfaction” is the most important one (4).

Universities of medical sciences have a great mission to train efficient professionals to fulfil health-care needs of the society. In this regard, the student plays an important role. Investigating students’ opinions is one of the most important and necessary elements to evaluate the quality of educational services in the universities and the results can be useful to improve their efficiency (5). Students will form the key parts of organizations in the future. Therefore, students’ satisfaction affects their opinion about their field of study to encourage and improve quality of education (6). Nehring believes that students, as recipients of professional services, are the best sources to identify educational behavior of their teachers. Identifying educational issues of the students and taking measures to solve them helps reaching educational goals and training skilled people to provide high-quality health care services (7).

Studies show that the more educational aids are available to learners, the better they will learn compared to those in unsuitable environments (8). In this regard, study of Hassanzadeh et al. showed that most students believe that clinical education is significantly effective before entering hospital departments (9). Contradictory studies have been made about students’ satisfaction with educational aids. A study by Pejhan et al. regarding students’ satisfaction with educational services of Sabzevar University of Medical Sciences in 2008 showed that the satisfaction level was moderate (10). In a study conducted in 2006 about students’ satisfaction in Liverpool University, students believed that the most emphasis is put on the education and the least is put on educational aids, and satisfaction level in more important sections was lower than less important ones (11). In a study regarding students’ satisfaction with services of Saddleback University in 2003, Hasoon concluded that students’ satisfaction level with educational services is 70% and with the university’s educational aids is 66% (12). Izadi et al. showed that only 40% of students were satisfied with the educational services (13). In another research by Mohammadian and Khanbabazadeh regarding students’ satisfaction level with different departments showed that education departments were scored moderate by students (14). In his study about satisfaction of students and teachers in graduate education with educational services, Siadat concluded that graduate 

students are unsatisfied with educational services in four fields of administrative, education, quality of accountability, and supervision and guidance and they believe that the educational administration’s efficiency was less than moderate. Determining satisfaction level in each field helps solving issues (16) and having descriptive information about students’ opinions is essential in order to make constructive changes, and using this information we can provide students with satisfaction (14,17). Thus, the purpose of current study was to investigate students’ satisfaction level with educational services in Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, which leads to improvement of educational services and efficiency and increase in students’ satisfaction level and university’s national rank. In this study, students’ satisfaction level was investigated in six fields of classroom physical conditions and educational aids, laboratory and practice rooms, educational administration, field training and internship, library and online resources, and teaching methods.

METHODS

 

This is a descriptive-analytical study. As used in similar studies, the data gathering tool was a researcher made questionnaire consisted of 54 questions (demographic features and questions regarding satisfaction with educational services).

This questionnaire was based on Likert-style with a five-point scale (excellent=5, very weak=1). Average satisfaction of 1 to 2 was defined as very low to low, 2 to 3 as low to moderate, 3 to 4 as moderate to high, and 4 to 5 as high to very high.

The questions address six main criteria regarding educational satisfaction, including classroom physical condition and educational aids, laboratory and practice rooms, educationaladministration, field training and internship, library and online resources, and teaching methods. To estimate validity of this questionnaire, comments of 10 researcher faculty members were used and Cronbach’s alpha test was used to determine reliability, which was valid (α=0.82). After determining sample size, more experienced students were preferred to be participated, therefore all students involved in this study were interns. The population includes 3200 students of Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences. Stratified random method was used for sampling. Sample size was determined using Krejcie and Morgan Table and considering variables, the estimation was 400 people; 312 from 400 questionnaires were given back by students. For data analysis and to determine descriptive parameters, SPSS-Ver.16 was used. Kolmogorov–Smirnov test was used to determine normal or non-normal state of the data. Since the data were non-normal (P<0.05), to compare satisfaction level in six mentioned criteria in males and females, Mann-Whitney U Test, and between different fields and faculties, Kruskal-Wallis Test was used (αα=0.05).

 

 

Students’ satisfaction level with classroom physical conditions and educational aids was moderate to good (3.11±1.7); 13.1% of all students had very poor, 15.7%  

RESULTS

 

poor, 26.9% moderate, 35.3% good, and 9% excellent satisfaction. Satisfaction level with laboratory and practice rooms was moderate to low (2.91±1.07); 13.1% of all students had very poor, 19.4% poor, 35.7% moderate, 27.3% good and 4.5% excellent satisfaction. Satisfaction level with educational administration was moderate (3.02±1.11); 12.8% of all students had very poor, 16.2% poor, 33.5% moderate, 31.4% good and 6.1% excellent satisfaction. Satisfaction level with field training and internship was moderate to low (2.94±1.21); 15.7% of all students had very poor, 14.4% poor, 27.9% moderate, 32.1% good, and 9.9% excellent satisfaction. Satisfaction level with library and online resources was moderate to low (2.49±1.18); 26.4% of all students had very poor, 23.8% poor, 28.8% moderate, 16.1% good and 4.9% excellent satisfaction. Satisfaction level with teaching method was moderate to low (3.12±1.11); 10.9% of all students had very poor, 15.3% poor, 34% moderate, 30.7% good, and 9.1% excellent satisfaction.

Descriptive and analytical parameters regarding satisfaction level of students of Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences are mentioned in tables 1 and 2.

 

DISCUSSION

 

Results showed that students’ satisfaction level with classroom physical conditions and educational aids was moderate to good (3.11±1.7). Although satisfaction level is rather appropriate, since classroom physical conditions and  

educational aids are important factors affecting the learning process, it is essential to put more effort into their improvement. It is obvious enough that the more educational aids are available to learners, the better they will learn compared to those in unsuitable environments (8). Hassanzadeh et al. showed that most students believe that clinical education is significantly effective before entering hospital departments (9). This satisfaction level showed significant difference between females and males,faculties, fields and degrees (P<0.001). This difference seems to be due to each group’s different expectations.The reason of significant difference between females and malescan be the different tastes and opinionsabout classroom physical conditions and educational aids. Results of this study are in accordance withothers. Pejhan et al. showed that in most fields, students’ satisfaction level is rather moderate (10). Also, a study by Douglas et al. showed thatstudents believed that the most emphasis is put on the education and the least is on educational facilities and aids and satisfaction level in more important parts was lower than less important ones (11). Hasoon showed that satisfaction level with educational services is 70%, with facilities is 66% and with environment safety is 70% (12).

Results of current study showed that satisfaction level with the laboratory and practice rooms is moderate to low 2.91±1.07. Since it is essential for a university with a high research level to have an equipped laboratory, it is necessary 

Table 1. Descriptive and analytical parameters regarding satisfaction level of students of Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences

Variable

N

(%)

Classroom environment and educational facilities

Laboratory and practice rooms environment

Educational administration services

Average

PValue

Average

PValue

Average

PValue

Gender

Male

100 (32.1)

3.05 (1.21)

< 0.001

2.92 (1.14)

0.388

3.04 (1.13)

0.394

Female

212 (67.9)

3.17 (1.12)

2.98 (1.01)

2.99 (1.08)

Curriculum level

Undergraduate

18

(5.8)

3.50 (0.899)

< 0.001

2.53 (1.11)

< 0.001

2.98 (1.18)

< 0.001

Bachelor

171 (54.8)

3.12 (1.14)

2.79 (1.06)

2.90 (1.01)

M.Sc.

22

(7.1)

3.14 (1.18)

3.19 (0.92)

3.07 (1.06)

Doctorate

101 (32.4)

3.03 (1.25)

3.11 (1.07)

3.22 (1.1)

Faculty

Health

63

(20.2)

3.27 (0.996)

< 0.001

2.74 (0.972)

< 0.001

2.71 (1.09)

< 0.001

Nursing and Midwifery

34

(10.9)

2.29 (1.1)

2.70 (1.11)

2.62 (1.05)

Paramedics

97

(24.7)

3.30 (1.16)

2.80 (1.09)

3.15 (1.01)

Pharmacy

50

(16)

3 (1.18)

3.11 (1.06)

3.23 (1.08)

Medicine

58

(18.6)

2.97 (1.08)

3.13 (1.05)

3 (1.08)

Dentistry

30

(9.6)

3.47 (1.28)

3.21 (1.09)

3.34 (1.08)

Total

312 (100)

3.11 (1.17)

-

2.91 (1.09)

-

3.02 (1.11)

 

 

Table 1 continued. Descriptive and analytical parameters regarding satisfaction level of students of Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences

Variable

N

(%)

Field training and internship

Laboratory and online resources

Teaching method

Average

PValue

Average

PValue

Average

PValue

Gender

Male

100 (32.1)

3.12 (1.2)

0.379

2.47 (1.25)

0.422

3.18 (1.18)

0.006

Female

212 (67.9)

3 (1.23)

2.51 (1.1)

3.05 (1.04)

Curriculum level

Undergraduate

18

(5.8)

2.83 (1.34)

0.744

2.46 (1.27)

< 0.001

3.49 (1.42)

< 0.001

Bachelor

171 (54.8)

2.94 (1.23)

2.46 (1.12)

3.02 (1.08)

M.Sc.

22

(7.1)

2.80 (1.23)

2.03 (1.01)

3.05 (1.05)

Doctorate

101 (32.4)

2.99 (1.15)

2.66 (1.26)

3.24 (1.1)

Faculty

Health

63

(20.2)

2.75 (1.2)

< 0.001

2.25 (1.009)

< 0.001

2.90 (1.01)

< 0.001

Nursing and Midwifery

34

(10.9)

2.29 (1.08)

2.36 (1.155)

2.93 (1.11)

Paramedics

97

(24.7)

3.33 (1.2)

2.59 (1.2)

3.21 (1.16)

Pharmacy

50

(16)

2.87 (1.16)

2.56 (1.21)

3.28 (1.06)

Medicine

58

(18.6)

3.04 (1.05)

2.43 (1.1)

3.09 (1.06)

Dentistry

30

(9.6)

2.78 (1.31)

2.82 (1.37)

3.24 (1.19)

Total

312 (100)

100

-

2.49 (1.18)

-

3.12 (1.11)

-

 

 

to take proper measures in this regard. This satisfaction level showed difference between faculties, fields and degrees (P<0.05). But this difference was not significant between females and males (P>0.05). Since each field needs different levelsof laboratory equipment, it is possible that in some certain fields and faculties, students may have needed more equipment. This explains different satisfaction levels between faculties, fields and degrees.The fact that people in a similar age group have similar educational needs regarding laboratory and practice rooms can explain why the difference between females and males was not significant.

Results of research showed that students’ satisfaction level with the educational administration was moderate (3.02±1.11). Thus, it is necessary to improve this level by shifting class times, non-held classes, make-up classes and internships. This satisfaction level showed significant difference between different faculties, fields and degrees (P<0.05) but no significant difference was observed between females and males (P>0.05). This can be due to different expectationsof different fields and degrees from educational administration’s services. These results are in accordance with previous studies. Izadi et al. showed that only 40% of students were satisfied with the educational administration’s services (13). Pejhan et al. reported that satisfaction level with the educational administration’s services was low (10). Mohammadian and Khanbabazadeh showed that educational administration scored moderate regarding students’ satisfaction (14). Siadat resulted that the  

educationaladministrationdid not perform well even at the moderate level (15).

Results of the research showed that students’ satisfaction level with field training and internship was moderate to low (2.94±1.21). Considering the importance of internship in completing students’ education, it is essential to improve this satisfaction level. This level showed significant difference between faculties and fields (P<0.05), but no significant difference was observed between females and males, and between different degrees (P>0.05). Rostaminejad showed that there is no significant difference between satisfaction level of female and male students (18).

Results of the research showed that students’ satisfaction level with library and online resources was moderateto low (2.49±1.18). This satisfaction level showed significant difference between different faculties, fields and degrees (P<0.05), but no significant difference was observed between females and males (P>0.05). According to the results of this research, most satisfaction with library and online resources was in doctorate degree,whereas in Mahdizadeh’s research, undergraduatestudents were most satisfied (19). International standards of medical education indicate that in order to improve medical education, educational aids and resources as library, lecture hall, classroom, laboratory and computer center are essential (20). A study in Isfahan University of Technology showed that 60% of students are satisfied with the computer services in central library at the level of moderate to high (21).

Results of the research showed that students’ satisfaction level 

Table 2. Students’ satisfaction level in different fields of study

Field of Study

N

(%)

Classroom physical conditions and educational aids

Laboratory and practice rooms

Educational administration

Field training and internship

Library and online resources

Teaching method

Environmental Health

32 (10.3)

3.31(1.01)

3.15(0.82)

3.05(1.03)

3.11(1.08)

2.35(1.03)

3.13(0.89)

Professional Health

22 (7.1)

3.32(0.87)

2.14(0.83)

2.33(1.03)

2.43(1.12)

1.92(0.938)

2.62(1.08)

General health

10 (3.2)

3(1.10)

2.81(1.01)

2.57(1.12)

2.45(1.46)

2.63(0.86)

2.89(1.05)

Medicine

27 (8.7)

2.63(1.02)

3.08(1.05)

3.07(1.05)

3.26(0.89)

2.53(1.13)

3.12(0.99)

Pharmacy

50 (16.0)

3(1.18)

3.11(1.06)

3.23(1.07)

2.87(1.16)

2.56(1.21)

3.28(1.06)

Dentistry

30 (9.6)

3.47(1.28)

3.21(1.09)

3.34(1.07)

2.78(1.31)

2.82(1.37)

3.24(1.19)

Laboratory Sciences

19 (6.1)

3(1.81)

2.95(0.94)

3.15(1.13)

3.37(1.07)

2.59(1.24)

3.21(1.05)

Anesthesiology

18 (5.8)

3.72(0.10)

3.24(1.06)

3.44(0.76)

3.42(0.10)

3.15(1.11)

3.46(1.00)

Operation Room

18 (5.8)

3(1.002)

2.82(1.19)

3.12(1.03)

3.53(1.2)

2.6(1.12)

3.07(0.10)

Nursing

15 (4.8)

2.33(0.94)

2.57(1.14)

2.69(1.11)

2.40(1.03)

2.17(1.28)

2.68(1.26)

Medical Emergencies

18 (5.8)

3.5(0.90)

2.53(1.11)

2.98(1.18)

2.83(1.34)

2.46(1.27)

3.49(1.42)

Radiology

8

(2.6)

3(1.12)

2.88(0.66)

3.48(0.82)

3.56(1.09)

2.5(1.07)

3.13(0.95)

Biochemistry

6

(1.9)

4(0.581)

3.33(0.99)

3.11(1.21)

2.58(1.44)

2.42(1.02)

2.95(1.34)

Microbiology

3

(1.0)

3.33(0.95)

3.33(1.12)

2.22(1.00)

2.33(0.82)

2.11(0.83)

3.29(1.18)

Midwifery

18 (5.8)

2.33(1.2)

2.81(1.09)

2.56(1.00)

2.17(1.13)

2.53(1.02)

3.16(0.96)

Nuclear Medicine

16 (5.1)

3.31(1.35)

2.34(1.17)

2.82(1.31)

3.34(1.35)

2.14(1.13)

2.77(1.29)

Psychology

2

(0.6)

4(0)

2.95(1.10)

2.83(0.72)

2.50(1.29)

1.50(0.67)

2.71(0.91)

Total

312 (100)

3.11(1.17)

2.91(1.08)

3.02(1.11)

2.94(1.21)

2.49(1.18)

3.12(1.11)

P-Value

<0.001

<0.001

<0.001

<0.001

<0.001

<0.001

 

 

with teaching method was moderate to low (3.12±1.11). This satisfaction level showed significant difference between different faculties, fields of study, degrees and between females and males (P<0.05). Results of the study by Jalilian et al. in Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences are in accordance with the current study (22).

One of the challenges of this study was the unavailability of a standard questionnaire. Also, the population was limited to a single university. To overcome these issues, researchers used a validated questionnaire. To increase generalizability of the results, subject size was increased and students’ opinions of all fields and degrees were used. 

According to results of the current study, in order to  

improve students’ satisfaction level, more attention should be paid to library and online resources, laboratory and practice rooms, field training and internship, efficiency of educational administration, classroom physical conditions and educational aids, and teaching method, respectively.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

We highly appreciate different faculties of Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences involved in this study. Moreover, we appreciate the research deputy for sponsorship.

 

Conflict of Interest: Authors declared no conflict of interest.

Funding and support: This article is confirmed and sponsored by the research deputy of Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences (code: 90278).

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