Featured Article| Volume 12, ISSUE 8, P305-312, August 2016

Success of the First Gynecological Teaching Associate Program in Turkey


      • The first GTA session caused nervousness, anxiety, and embarrassment among students.
      • GTA's encouraging and relaxing approach helped students to overcome their initial embarrassment and hesitation.
      • The students extremely satisfied with the learning experience guided by GTA.



      Given the sensitive nature of the examination, intimate examination procedures such as breast and genital examination create increased difficulties for students that other noninvasive techniques do not. The purpose of this study was to explore the feasibility and efficacy of an innovative instructional technique, breast examination training via a Gynecological Teaching Associate (GTA), in graduate nursing training in a part of the world where cultural norms dictate a more conservative approach to medical training.


      A qualitative study design was used, and semistructured interviews were undertaken with four female graduate nursing students.


      Students expressed feelings of anxiety, embarrassment, and hesitation at the first meeting with the GTA. However, owing to the encouraging and relaxing approach of the GTA, students overcame their initial difficulties, successfully completed the project, and reported both surprise at the unexpected success of the methodology and enthusiasm with the instructional technique.


      Our study clearly shows that even in cultures where the methodology has never been used before and where a more conservative approach to medical training is used, the effectiveness of this kind of education crosses numerous boundaries and eliminates obstacles to provide excellent clinical examination instruction to all learners.


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