Self-directed learning readiness and learning styles among Omani nursing students: Implications for online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic

Cherry Ann C. Ballad*, Leodoro Jabien Labrague, Arcalyd Rose R. Cayaban, Oscar M. Turingan, Siham Mahmoud Al Balushi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: The emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic compelled many academic institutions to resort to distance learning and online education, requiring a higher degree of student self-direction and motivation to learn. This study explored self-directed learning (SDL) readiness among nursing students in Oman, their learning styles (LS), and the association of demographic variables and LS with SDL. Methods: The study, which followed a descriptive, cross-sectional design, surveyed 236 Omani nursing students via an online questionnaire containing two standardized scales: the Self-Directed Learning Readiness Scale for Nursing Education and the Learning Style Scales. Results: Nursing students were identified as having a low level of SDL (mean = 149.58). Probation status (β = −0.165; p = 0.021) was negatively associated with SDL. In terms of LS, solitary (β = 0.217; p = 0.001), competitive (β = 0.201; p = 0.005), imaginative (β = 0.19; p = 0.012), and perceptive LS (β = 0.437; p = 0.0) were positively associated with SDL. An analytical LS was negatively associated with SDL (β = −0.155; p = 0.022). Conclusion: Academic probation status and an analytical LS both yielded lower SDL scores. Perceptive, solitary, competitive, or imaginative learners tended to have higher SDL scores. Deliberate planning and strategies are necessary to help probation students cope with academic demands, especially with the advent of intensified digital education. Because no single learning environment can fulfill the needs of every LS, nurse educators must implement SDL-aimed teaching and learning strategies that appeal to a variety of learners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)94-103
Number of pages10
JournalNursing Forum
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2022
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)

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