A single-case study of carer agency

Ian Kinchin, Iain Wilkinson


This paper highlights the role of single case methods in focussing on the learning needs of a marginalised group. It analyses the role of carer agency to help healthcare professionals view key incidents as inclusive learning opportunities for professionals, patients and carers. Through circumstance, one of the authors found himself to be in the position of primary carer for his elderly father whilst sumultaneously engaged professionally in dialogue about clinical pedagogy. The paper presents a pst hoc research design, using participant observational data of a single-case study, triangulated with reference to professional practice  and current research literature. The primary data source for this paper is the carer's autoethnographic narrative that was constructed during, and then reflecting back on a period of extended participant observation. The importance of carer agency in sustaining patient care is discussed as a factor in shared decision-making, facilitating a deliberative model of physician-patient relationships. The paper showcases the high degree of resonance with the research literaure that can be generated from a single case study, whose teaching value goes beyond its clinical generalizeability.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/jnep.v6n11p34

Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

ISSN 1925-4040 (Print)   ISSN 1925-4059 (Online)

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