Background/purpose: Nursing faculty are an integral part educating new nurses. The shortage of nursing faculty is estimated to be 7.7% nationally (American Association of Colleges of Nursing [AACN], 2012). According to AACN, (2012), nursing schools in the United States turned away 75,587 qualified nursing applicants from nursing programs in 2011. The nursing faculty shortage may be due in part to inadequate mentoring of nursing faculty that potentially decreases job satisfaction, which in turn contributes to faculty leaving their academic positions (AACN, 2012a). The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between the perceptions of academic mentoring and job satisfaction in academic nursing faculty.
Method: This study used a descriptive correlational, cross-sectional design to examine the relationship between the perceptions of mentoring and job satisfaction (perceived positive job components) in academic nursing faculty. The Dreher and Ash mentoring scale and Abridged Job Descriptive Index/Job in General Scale (aJDI/aJIG) were used to measure perceived mentoring and job satisfaction. The sample included 92 baccalaureate nursing programs accredited by Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) in the United States. A total of 118 faculty responded to the survey.
Results: There were five out of six correlations significant between the Dreher and Ash Mentoring Scale and Abridged Job Descriptive Index/Job in General Scale. Specifically, those individuals who had more mentoring had more positive views about their jobs in general (r = .32, p = .001), opportunities for promotion (r = .43, p <.001), and supervision (r = .42, p <.001). The correlations between mentoring and pay (r = .23, p =.016) and work on present job (r = .24, p = .012) while significant, were weak. No significant relationship was found between mentoring and “people on your present job”, p> .05 indicating that support from mentors did not translate into more positive views of colleagues. All correlations were in a positive direction.
Conclusions: Academic faculty receiving mentoring within their position appear to have a higher job satisfaction rating. Literature supports the need for further investigation of mentoring in nursing faculty as gaps in the literature mainly exist in the field of nursing academia. Faculty shortages warrant the need to investigate mentoring further in order to see what effect having a mentor has on an individual in the nursing education realm. Information is needed also on the types of mentoring relationships (formal or informal) and how they affect the outcome.