ERIC Number: ED395620
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Apr
Mentoring Relationships and Beginning Nursing Practice: A Study of Professional Socialization.
Darby, Barbara Ann
A study was conducted of graduates of an associate degree nursing program at a community college to explore issues related to early professional socialization in beginning nursing practice and to determine the influences of mentoring relationships on professional socialization. Focus group interviews were conducted with a sample of 31 graduates from May 1994 who had been working as nursing practitioners for 3 to 7 months. Based on responses, the issues of primary importance for beginning practitioners were related to the following: (1) pre-employment considerations, including unanticipated delays in finding employment and fears regarding job preparedness; (2) entry issues, such as concerns related to institutional support structures and relationships with team members; (3) the role of mentors, emphasizing their role in introducing graduates to the institutional culture, modeling technical and cognitive competence, and demonstrating characteristic behaviors and attitudes; (4) other factors that facilitate or hinder beginning practice, such as having self-help strategies and receiving feedback; and (5) making the transition from novice to professional. The findings supported the notion that professional socialization begins in formal educational programs and continues in the workplace. To prepare novices for the workplace, nursing education programs must include clinical experiences that progressively challenge students' abilities and focus on relationships with physicians and ancillary personnel. Contains 47 references. (TGI)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New York, NY, April 8-12, 1996).