A Contemporary Model for Undergraduate Nursing Education: A Grounded Theory Study

Loretta Aller
Nurse Educator 2020 October 18

BACKGROUND: Health care trends including advanced technology, higher patient acuity, and shorter employment orientation have impacted the environment in which new-graduate nurses are entering the workforce. These issues are contributing to new nurses leaving the workforce prematurely. Theoretical foundations for nursing education need to be updated to better prepare graduates for entry into this burdened environment.

PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to explore, from the student perspective, the process of educational development into professional licensure-ready graduates.

METHOD: Grounded theory was used to explore the developmental process of undergraduate nursing education.

RESULTS: Two simultaneous developmental processes emerged: decision-making and self-doubt/self-efficacy. Early in the nursing program, students made very few patient care decisions and were plagued with self-doubt. As knowledge and experience were gained, decisions became based on patient conditions, self-doubt decreased, self-efficacy emerged, and students relayed increased comfort, confidence, and competence.

CONCLUSION: A contemporary nursing education framework has been developed for testing.

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