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ERIC Number: ED532389
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 156
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1094-9939-1
Associate Degree Nursing Graduate Perceptions of the Influence of Service Learning on Transition to Clinical Practice
Smith-Stillson, Kathy
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Colorado State University
The 2007 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projected a need for more than one million new and replacement nurses by 2016, while higher education continues to be challenged to find methods of producing graduate satisfaction, accompanied by successful transition from college to the workplace. Some nursing programs are meeting the challenge by utilizing a 1970s teaching strategy partnering experiential learning and community service--service learning, allowing students to work side-by-side with practicing medical professionals to meet community needs for nursing practice. Although success of this pedagogy has been documented with increasing frequency by Baccalaureate Nursing programs, Associate Degree (AD) program outcomes have only been described anecdotally, if at all, in research. Furthermore, even anecdotal accounts on any level have involved the reflections of student nurses, faculty and employers. Nowhere in the literature have reflections been documented of AD registered nurses who had experienced service learning as students. Using a qualitative basic interpretive design, this research sought to capture the meaning AD prepared RNs attributed to the service learning experience as it related to transition from the Associate Degree nursing program to the practice setting. This study used focus groups and interviews to explore the perceptions of Associate Degree prepared registered nurses whose nursing program included service learning educational experiences. In response to open-ended questions, fifteen participants shared their perceptions of what transpired as each worked in a community free clinic with nurse practitioners to meet clinical coursework requirements. Six themes were identified from participant responses. Three of the themes were intrinsic to the study: skill development, heightened awareness, and increased civic responsibility. Three additional themes went beyond the transfer of learning themes: professional inspiration, satisfaction, and success.In light of the findings related to participant responses, additional research of both a qualitative and quantitative nature is recommended. Research of this nature is warranted both with graduates of Associate Degree nursing programs where service learning was part of the curriculum and with graduates of Baccalaureate Degree nursing programs where service learning was part of the curriculum. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A