Theoretical Insights into the Phenomenon of Expert to Novice

Tuesday, 8 July 2008: 10:50 AM
Judy K. Anderson , School of Nursing, Viterbo University, LaCrosse, WI

Learning Objective 1: Identify the two patterns characteristic of the expert who becomes a novice in a new context

Learning Objective 2: Compare and contrast the “virgin” novice and the experienced novice

In 1984, Benner published the seminal work outlining the levels of skill acquisition for nurses, progressing from novice to the level of expert. A qualitative study, using the paradigm of naturalistic inquiry, of 18 clinical experts hired as full-time nurse educators in a baccalaureate program explicated the transition experience. Additionally, the study provided theoretical insights into a level of skill acquisition following the expert level. This presentation provides a research-based, theoretical view of the difference between the “virgin” novice described by Benner, and the expert who becomes a novice in a new context. Two patterns emerged from data elicited in semi-structured interviews with the educators in their first or second year of teaching. The patterns of questioning along with transferred knowledge and skill provide a basis for what might be theoretically described as the experienced novice.