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Effectiveness of using non–traditional teaching methods to prepare student health care professionals for the delivery of the Mental State Examination: a systematic review protocol

Parasuram, Rajni RN, RMN, BSc, MEd; Huiting, Xie RN, RMN, BHScN, PhD (Nursing); Wang, Jia RN, RMN, BScN; Thirumarban, Anouradha RN; Kum Eng, Helen Joon RN, RMN, BSc; Lien, Poh Chee RN, AdvDip (Gerontology), BN, MHSE

Author Information
JBI Database of Systematic Reviews and Implementation Reports: August 2014 - Volume 12 - Issue 8 - p 3-19
doi: 10.11124/jbisrir-2014-1354
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Inclusion criteria

Types of participants

The review will consider all studies that include student learners in the following field: medicine, nursing, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech pathology, medical radiation science, nutrition and dietetics, oral health and podiatry and those who have received education/training on administration of the MSE in academic settings which offer mental health education. Papers involving qualified health care workers will be excluded.

Types of interventions

The review will consider all studies that include non-traditional teaching methods (for example role play, computer-based delivery, standardized patients, virtual reality environments, etc.) in the delivery and conduct of mental state examination.


The review will consider traditional teaching methods (for example didactic teaching, classroom teaching and lectures) as comparators. The review will also consider studies with no education as a comparator.

Types of outcome measures

This systematic review will consider studies that measure learners’ outcome (for example learners’ satisfaction, improved knowledge and self-confidence).

Types of studies

This review will consider evidence from primary quantitative studies which address the effectiveness of a chosen method used for the teaching of the MSE published in English. The review will primarily consider Randomized Controlled Trials (RCTs). In the absence of RCTs, other quantitative research designs, such as quasi - randomized controlled trials, cohort studies, case control studies, longitudinal studies, descriptive studies and correlational design studies will be considered for inclusion. In the absence of quantitative research studies, other texts such as opinion papers, discussion papers and reports that meet the inclusion criteria will be considered.

Search strategy

The literature search seeks to find published studies and papers, limiting to English language reports using a variety of databases. The search strategy will include the period from the inception of the database to 2014. A three-stage search will be undertaken in this review. An initial search of CINAHL and MEDLINE databases will be undertaken to identify the key words. A second extensive search will be undertaken and extend to other relevant databases using the identified keywords. The third search will involve reference lists and bibliographies of all identified articles for additional studies. Electronic databases to be searched include:



Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials



Web of Science

Wiley InterScience

The search for unpublished studies will include:

Google scholar


ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Database


Dissertation Abstract Online (DIALOG)

Education Resource Information Center (ERIC)

Initial keywords:

Video/videotapes, lectures, virtual reality/simulation, avatars, computer based training, elearning, role play, simulation, face to face interviews, mental state assessment, mental health assessment, psychiatric assessment, mental-health, teaching: education, standardized patients, computer assisted learning, student.

Assessment of methodological quality

Studies selected will be assessed by two independent reviewers for methodological validity prior to inclusion in the review using the standardized critical appraisal instruments from the Joanna Briggs Institute System for the Unified Management, Assessment and Review of Information (JBI-SUMARI) (Appendix I). Any disagreements that arise between the reviewers will be resolved through discussion or with a third reviewer.

In the absence of research studies, textual papers selected for retrieval will be assessed by two independent reviewers for authenticity prior to inclusion in the review using standardized critical appraisal instruments from the Joanna Briggs Institute Narrative, Opinion and Text Assessment and Review Instrument (JBI-NOTARI) (Appendix I). Any disagreements that arise between the reviewers will be resolved through discussion, or with a third reviewer.

Data extraction

Data will be extracted by the two independent reviewers using data extraction tools developed by the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI). Quantitative data will be extracted from papers using standardized data extraction tools from the Joanna Briggs Institute Meta-Analysis of Statistics Assessment and Review Instrument (JBI-MAStARI) (Appendix II). In the absence of research studies, data from expert opinion texts and reports included in the review will be extracted using standardized data extraction tools from the JBI-NOTARI (Appendix II). Authors will be contacted if further raw data is required. Any disagreements that arise between the reviewers will be resolved through discussion or with a third reviewer.

Data synthesis

For quantitative findings

Where possible, quantitative research study results will be pooled using JBI-MAStARI. All results will be double entered. Odds ratio (for categorical data) and weighted mean differences (for continuous data) and their 95% confidence intervals will be calculated for analysis. Heterogeneity will be assessed using the standard Chi-square.

Ordinal and measurement scale outcomes will be meta-analyzed as continuous data. Two summary statistics used for meta-analysis of continuous data include the weighted mean difference (WMD) and the standardized mean difference (SMD). WMD will be used if studies all report the outcome using the same scale while SMD will be used if the studies report the outcome using the different scales.

Nominal outcomes will be meta-analyzed as dichotomous data using event rate (number that had the outcome/number that received the specific intervention). Where statistical pooling is not possible, the findings will be presented in narrative form.

For expert opinion texts and reports

In the absence of research studies, where meta-synthesis of text is possible, conclusions in papers will be pooled using JBI-NOTARI. This will involve the aggregation or synthesis of conclusions to generate a set of statements that represent that aggregation, on the basis of similarity in meaning. These categories will then be subjected to a meta-synthesis in order to produce a single comprehensive set of synthesized findings that can be used as a basis for evidence-based practice. Where textual pooling is not possible, the conclusions will be presented in narrative form.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest regarding this systematic review.


The reviewers acknowledge Institute of Mental Health, Singapore, for its support in this review.


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                                  Appendix I: Appraisal instruments

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                                  Appendix II: Data extraction instruments

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                                  Video/videotapes; lectures; virtual reality/simulation; avatars; computer based training; elearning; role play; simulation; face to face interviews; mental state assessment; mental health assessment; psychiatric assessment; mental-health; teaching; education; standardized patients; computer assisted learning; student

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