Journal of Nursing Education

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Major Articles 

Health Literacy Knowledge and Experiences of Senior Baccalaureate Nursing Students

Catherine M. Cormier, PhD, RN; Joe W. Kotrlik, PhD

Abstract

ABSTRACT

This study assessed the health literacy knowledge and experiences of senior baccalaureate nursing students enrolled at state universities in Louisiana. A total of 361 nursing students at eight institutions completed the Health Literacy Knowledge and Experience Survey. Results indicated participants were able to identify low socioeconomic groups at high risk for low health literacy, were aware of the consequences associated with low health literacy, and could identify effective interventions used to evaluate patients’ understanding of health care teaching. However, knowledge gaps were evident in the following areas: identifying older adults as a high-risk group, screening for health literacy, and assessing guidelines for written health care information. Responses to the Health Literacy Experience scale suggest participants’ health literacy experiences were limited regarding conducting health literacy screenings and assessing the reading level, illustrations, and cultural appropriateness of written materials.

AUTHORS

Received: February 6, 2007

Accepted: September 17, 2007

Posted: February 27, 2009

Dr. Cormier is Assistant Professor, Southeastern Louisiana University, School of Nursing, Hammond, and Dr. Kotrlik is Professor, School of Human Resource Education and Workforce Development, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Address correspondence to Catherine M. Cormier, PhD, RN, Assistant Professor, SLU 10835, Southeastern Louisiana University, School of Nursing, Hammond, LA 70402; e-mail: ccormier@selu.edu.

Abstract

ABSTRACT

This study assessed the health literacy knowledge and experiences of senior baccalaureate nursing students enrolled at state universities in Louisiana. A total of 361 nursing students at eight institutions completed the Health Literacy Knowledge and Experience Survey. Results indicated participants were able to identify low socioeconomic groups at high risk for low health literacy, were aware of the consequences associated with low health literacy, and could identify effective interventions used to evaluate patients’ understanding of health care teaching. However, knowledge gaps were evident in the following areas: identifying older adults as a high-risk group, screening for health literacy, and assessing guidelines for written health care information. Responses to the Health Literacy Experience scale suggest participants’ health literacy experiences were limited regarding conducting health literacy screenings and assessing the reading level, illustrations, and cultural appropriateness of written materials.

AUTHORS

Received: February 6, 2007

Accepted: September 17, 2007

Posted: February 27, 2009

Dr. Cormier is Assistant Professor, Southeastern Louisiana University, School of Nursing, Hammond, and Dr. Kotrlik is Professor, School of Human Resource Education and Workforce Development, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Address correspondence to Catherine M. Cormier, PhD, RN, Assistant Professor, SLU 10835, Southeastern Louisiana University, School of Nursing, Hammond, LA 70402; e-mail: ccormier@selu.edu.

Authors

Received: February 6, 2007

Accepted: September 17, 2007

Posted: February 27, 2009

Dr. Cormier is Assistant Professor, Southeastern Louisiana University, School of Nursing, Hammond, and Dr. Kotrlik is Professor, School of Human Resource Education and Workforce Development, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Address correspondence to Catherine M. Cormier, PhD, RN, Assistant Professor, SLU 10835, Southeastern Louisiana University, School of Nursing, Hammond, LA 70402; e-mail: ccormier@selu.edu.

10.3928/01484834-20090416-02

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