Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Registered nurses return to college: Lessons learned from hindsight
by Wolff, Debra A., D.N.S., Sage Graduate School, 2013, 257; 3620195
Abstract (Summary)

The recent impetus to increase the number of baccalaureate-prepared nurses comes from within and outside the profession, prompting increased numbers of registered nurses (RN-BSN) to return to college. Yet little is known about what these adult, non-traditional students do to prepare for the challenges ahead. Therefore, the purpose of this mixed-methods case study was to learn how RN-BSNs prepare for their return to college, why they go about doing so, and what resources they utilize. Secondly, what are the gaps, how do they overcome them, and what is their advice to potential RN-BSN students so they could be better prepared. The Transtheoretical Model and the Epidemiological Model were used to guide the study. The eight participants interviewed ranged in age (32-57). Each had contemplated the return to school since their initial nursing program. Six were enrolled at a rural satellite site at their place of employment. While participants prepared in a variety of ways, findings showed they also did not know what to expect and thus felt unprepared in many respects. The most common type of preparation was mental; whereas the most frequent gap in preparation was academic, including writing papers, presentation skills, computer literacy, citations, obtaining books, information literacy, and study skills. Overall, five themes summarized their advice to future students: (a) obtain academic skills early on, (b) find balance, (c) make connections, (d) embrace the difference, and (e) don't wait; make the decision. Based on the findings, examples of recommendations that are both practical and affordable are outlined.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Jatulis, Linnea
Commitee: Brunell, Julie, Michela, Nancy J.
School: Sage Graduate School
Department: School of Health Sciences
School Location: United States -- New York
Source: DAI-B 75/08(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Adult education, Nursing, Higher education
Keywords: Case study, Epidemiological model, Non-traditional, Registered nurses, Rn-bsn, Rural, Transtheoretical model
Publication Number: 3620195
ISBN: 978-1-303-89929-4
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