Documenting achievement of selected BSN Essentials as learning outcomes with a self authorship framework

Tuesday, 19 November 2013: 8:50 AM

Helen F. Hodges, RN, PhD
Georgia Baptist College of Nursing, Mercer University, Atlanta, GA

Learning Objective 1: Describe an effective, assessment process by which evidence of internalization of selected undergraduate nursing professionalism competencies can be evaluated.

Learning Objective 2: Apply the theory of self-authorship to document developing professional identity and professional values.

The purpose of this qualitative study was to assess prelicensure students’ growth in and achievement of selected essential competencies from the AACN Essentials of Baccalaureate Nursing Education.  Specific emphasis was internalization of patient advocacy, principles of social justice, ethics, cultural competence, and collaboration using a framework of self-authorship.  Self-authorship explains college students’ developmental growth in knowledge construction and thinking, coherent internal self identity, and capacity to engage in mutual, interpersonal relationships. These three dimensions are necessary for college graduates to be effective workers and citizens and are inherently reflected in selected AACN competencies of professionalism and professional values, interprofessional communication and collaboration, and baccalaureate generalist practice.

A purposive sample included two cohorts: those who had completed year one of the two year prelicensure BSN curriculum, and those who were preparing for graduation after having successfully completed both years one and two of the program. Participants were asked to answer three open-ended questions anonymously.

Responses were first analyzed for evidence of developmental growth in knowledge construction, coherent personal identity, and capacity to engage in interpersonal relationships using a framework of self authorship.  A second analysis provided evidence of growth in or achievement of selected competencies using the AACN Essentials for Baccalaureate Education.Findings supported evidence of developing patient advocacy, practice-based ethical reasoning, cultural competence, collaborative interprofessional communication, critical thinking, and comprehensive clinical competence fitting a beginning baccalaureate generalist nurse.

Significant to nursing education is the necessity to supply the nursing profession with reflective, knowledgeable clinical practitioners who practice with compassion, expertise, integrative thinking, and maturity in navigating adult roles and responsibilities of the professional nurse. Nurses are called by Institute of Medicine to practice at the highest level possible and to contribute to interprofessional health care problem solving, and to develop the skills, knowledge, and attitudes to provide safe, effective patient care.