Research Utilization and Critical Thinking of Undergraduate Nursing Students

  • Author / Creator
    Meherali, Salima M
  • In the nursing profession, the concept of critical thinking (CT) has been increasingly the focus of investigation for the past several years. CT is a valuable skill in nursing practice. Nurses need complex thinking skills to manage effectively the fast-paced and constantly changing health care environments in which they work. Critical thinking skills are also vital in developing evidence-based nursing practice. Nurses who are disposed to think critically are more likely to interpret the available evidence critically, and more able to make high quality judgments and draw valid inferences. Currently, I did not find any published studies that specifically examined the relationship between Critical Thinking Dispositions CTDs) and research utilization (RU) of undergraduate nursing students. The overall aim of the research was to investigate the critical thinking dispositions (CTDs) and Research Utilization (RU) of undergraduate nursing students enrolled in a baccalaureate nursing program at a university in Western Canada. It was also the purpose of this research study to identify undergraduate nursing students’ perceptions about critical thinking and its relationship to research utilization. A mixed method sequential explanatory design was used to answer the research questions. In the first paper (Chapter 3), quantitative data and findings related to CTDs and RU are reported. The results of this study indicate that the majority of baccalaureate nursing students who participated in the study had adequate levels of CTDs and RU. These results reinforce the need for students’ continued development in the areas of CT and RU. In the second paper (chapter 4), qualitative findings related to research utilization are reported. The study findings are categorized into the components of PARIHS framework evidence, context and facilitation. Findings disclose some key themes of factors perceived by nursing students that facilitate or restrict them to use research in practice setting. In the third paper (chapter 5), I discuss some of the challenges that one researcher faced when undertaking a mixed methods research project. The combined findings of this dissertation discussed in chapter 6, demonstrate that dispositions are crucial to critical thinking; without them CT and RU do not happen or may be substandard. Through my research, I was able to identify several ways by which educational and clinical organizational culture and context exert an influence on undergraduate nursing students CTDs and RU behaviors. Recommendations, limitations and avenues for future research are also presented in this chapter.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
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  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
  • Specialization
    • Nursing
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Davies, Barbara (Faculty of Health Sciences)
    • Paul, Pauline (Faculty of Nursing)
    • Strean, Billy (Physical Education & Recreation Faculty)
    • Slaughter, Susan (Faculty of Nursing)
    • Profetto-McGrath, Joanne (Faculty of Nursing)