Journal of Nursing Education

Major Articles 

Perspective Transformation: Enhancing the Development of Professionalism in RN-to-BSN Students

Arlene H. Morris, MSN, RN; Debbie Faulk, PhD, RN

Abstract

The purpose of this research was to examine whether there are resultant behavioral changes in professionalism for returning adult RN–to–BSN students and to identify teaching-learning activities that stimulate transformative learning. Mezirow’s adult learning theory served as a theoretical guide for the study. A convenience sample of students enrolled in a RN-to-BSN completion program during 2 academic years was surveyed using the core standards from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s essentials of baccalaureate nursing education. A total of 26 learning activities were identified as creating cognitive dissonance (conflict of values). Changes in professional behavior 3 months postgraduation included increased collaboration with the health care team, increased patient advocacy, and increased confidence in the role as a teacher of patients and families. The findings indicate that planning learning activities in nursing curricula can foster perspective transformation in professionalism.

Abstract

The purpose of this research was to examine whether there are resultant behavioral changes in professionalism for returning adult RN–to–BSN students and to identify teaching-learning activities that stimulate transformative learning. Mezirow’s adult learning theory served as a theoretical guide for the study. A convenience sample of students enrolled in a RN-to-BSN completion program during 2 academic years was surveyed using the core standards from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s essentials of baccalaureate nursing education. A total of 26 learning activities were identified as creating cognitive dissonance (conflict of values). Changes in professional behavior 3 months postgraduation included increased collaboration with the health care team, increased patient advocacy, and increased confidence in the role as a teacher of patients and families. The findings indicate that planning learning activities in nursing curricula can foster perspective transformation in professionalism.
Authors

Received: June 21, 2004

Accepted: December 6, 2005

Ms. Morris is Distinguished Teaching Assistant Professor of Nursing, and Dr. Faulk is Distinguished Teaching Associate Professor of Nursing, Auburn University Montgomery, Montgomery, Alabama.

This research was supported by an Auburn University Montgomery Faculty Research Grant-in-Aid.

Address correspondence to Arlene H. Morris, EdD(c), RN, Assistant Professor of Nursing, Auburn University Montgomery, PO Box 244023, Montgomery, AL 36124-4023; e-mail: amorris@mail.aum.edu.

10.3928/01484834-20071001-04

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