Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Understanding the undergraduate experience of the baccalaureate nursing student with English as an additional language
by Dzubaty, Dolores R., Ph.D., Capella University, 2013, 138; 3589238
Abstract (Summary)

Disparities exist in healthcare related to language barriers and lack of cultural understanding between caregivers and recipients. Increasing the linguistic and cultural diversity of caregivers may decrease the healthcare disparities observed. The research study described in this manuscript was conducted to explore the undergraduate student experiences of nurses representing multiple cultural groups, speaking multiple languages, and representing a cross section of the population of interest. The challenge of speaking English as an additional language (EAL) and belonging to differing cultural groups presents difficulties while successfully completing a baccalaureate nursing program of study. The Theory of Margin was the theoretical framework utilized for the study conducted to achieve an understanding of the educational experience from the student perspective. A qualitative methodology of conversational interviews was utilized to explore the experiences of successful senior nursing students and recent graduates with EAL. Six different languages were spoken by study participants with EAL. Findings of the study revealed participants did not perceive having EAL to be an obstacle to learning. Language challenges resulted from the use of colloquialisms in presentations, handouts, and test materials. Study participants expressed a preference for solitary study practices and a dislike for random assignment to group projects. Support from others was reported to enhance the participants' ability to succeed. Participants expressed feelings of empathy for the patients who were also from diverse backgrounds. Implications of the findings would suggest the need for careful review of course materials to remove colloquialisms and identification of improved and supportive teaching strategies such as purposeful group assignments for nursing education faculty with similar student populations. Future research investigation may explore the perceptions of nurses with EAL who have completed their baccalaureate with more diverse patient populations and examination of the effect of simulation scenarios to improving communication skills of students with EAL.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Pilcher, Jobeth
Commitee: DeGagne, Jennie, Lessner, Janet
School: Capella University
Department: Education
School Location: United States -- Minnesota
Source: DAI-A 74/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: English as a Second Language, Adult education, Nursing, Higher education
Keywords: Baccalaureate nursing, Education, English as an additional language, Nursing, Success
Publication Number: 3589238
ISBN: 978-1-303-27724-5
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