Wednesday, July 11, 2007
This presentation is part of : Integrating EBP into an Undergraduate Nursing Curriculum: It Takes a Team
Introduction of EBP in the Undergraduate Curriculum: Several small steps lead to a giant step for curriculum revision
Donna M. Hallas, PhD, APRN, BC, CPNP, Lienhard School of Nursing, Pace University, Pleasantville, NY, USA

Over the past five years principles of evidence-based practice have been strategically integrated within didactic and clinical courses in the undergraduate curriculum to achieve  outcome objectives of having a curriculum that encourages students to critically analyze a clinical problem and to identify appropriate evidence-based nursing interventions. The accelerated baccalaureate nursing student population was selected for a pilot project to integrate evidence-based practice in an acute care pediatric nursing course.  The clinical faculty and students were introduced to the concepts of EBP in the clinical setting by a visiting faculty member who had EBP expertise and continued to mentor the clinical faculty and students throughout the semester.  The semester culminated with successful small group poster presentations in which enthusiastic nursing students demonstrated their ability to critically analyze clinical problems and implement best practice guidelines.  With this success the next step in the integration process was to introduce the principles to the generic baccalaureate nursing students.  Since generic nursing students are neophytes in the overall process of critical thinking, strategies used to achieve success with these students included a ‘baby-step’ approach to the concepts of evidence-based practice in primary care pediatric settings by introduction of classroom activities such as simulation of clinical problems, brainstorming the appropriate PICO question, followed by faculty-led searches for best evidence and finally student group searches for best evidence.  Once some mastery of this process was documented via student papers and presentations, the students began to apply EBP in their assigned acute care pediatric clinical settings.   Students became enamored with the search for best evidence and often through the halls of the Lienhard School of Nursing students could be heard emphatically asking one another, “And what is the best current evidence for your proposed nursing interventions!”  Successful assignments and strategies used throughout the curriculum will be presented.