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In developmental research to devise a strategy to identify students who may benefit from assistance with learning habits, approaches to study were explored in undergraduate nursing students (n ¼ 122) enrolled in a compulsory first-year course in physiology at a regional Australian university. The course constituted 30 credits (25%) of their first year of study. Using the Approaches and Study Skills Inventory (ASSIST), students were identified as adopting a deep (n ¼ 38, 31%), strategic (n ¼ 30, 25%), or a surface (n ¼ 54, 44%) approach to study. Internal consistency (Cronbach’s alpha [α]) for deep, strategic, and surface was 0.85, 0.87, and 0.76, respectively. Subsequently, a cluster analysis was done to identify two groupings: a “surface” group (n ¼ 53) and a “deep/ strategic” group (n ¼ 69). The surface group scored lower in deep (33.28 6.42) and strategic (39.36 6.79) approaches and higher in the surface (46.96 9.57) approach. Conversely, the deep/strategic group scored 46.10 6.81, 57.17 7.81, and 41.87 6.47 in deep, strategic, and surface styles, respectively. This application of the ASSIST questionnaire and cluster analysis thus differentiated students adopting a surface approach to study. This strategy may enable educators to target resources, for example additional tutorial opportunities, peerassisted study support, and tutor-led seminar sessions aimed at encouraging students to adopt a less superficial approach to study. Keyw

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Open Access Journal Article

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Open Access