Generators Versus Users of Nursing Research: Transitioning towards Evidence-Based Practice in a Graduate Nursing Program

Wednesday, 14 July 2010: 9:10 AM

Kathleen Neville, PhD, RN
School of Nursing, Kean University, Union, NJ

Learning Objective 1: describe the process of transitioning from a traditional research approach to an evidence-based approach in nursing research.

Learning Objective 2: identify factors related to the effective implementation of an evidence-based approach in graduate nursing education.

Worldwide, evidence-based practice is increasingly recognized as a necessity for the delivery of the highest quality care to patients and families. Accordingly, the focus of educating nurses from a predominantly traditional research generator focus has shifted to incorporating an evidence-based approach addressing users of research. The purpose of this pilot study is to describe the process of transitioning from a traditional research focus to implementation of an evidence-based approach in graduate nursing education.

Using a case method approach, graduate students enrolled in three consecutive research courses which had transitioned from original research to evidence-based projects along with faculty were investigated to explore the implementation of an evidence-based approach to determine the best practice for clinical issues in their practice settings.

Collaboration with reference librarians provided students with valuable search expertise. After assessing library resources and databases, additional subscriptions included the Cochrane Library and Joanna Briggs Institute. In addition to traditional nursing research content, evidence-based practice with emphasis on the formulation of PICO questions, identification of levels of evidence, and additional focus of odds ratio and confidence intervals in statistical analysis were introduced.  Substantial faculty discussion involved innovative teaching methods, IRB processes, and feasibility of evidence-based practice projects.  

PICO questions were diverse and yielded variability in the ability to obtain systematic reviews. PICO questions addressed nursing interventions involving acquisition of psychomotor skills in simulation, adolescent sleep deprivation, SBAR change in shift reporting method, cognitive rehearsal in response to horizontal violence, and coping with breathlessness.

Findings revealed that students became highly cognizant of the need to rely on the best evidence to determine clinical practice decisions and to serve as EBP mentors in their agencies. Qualitative data regarding barriers, facilitators, strengths, weaknesses and overall faculty and student responses will be analyzed.