This quasi-experimental study investigated the effects of an academic community health nursing program on functions and competencies of entry level public health nurses. The primary purpose of this study was to ascertain if additional knowledge regarding functions and competencies expected of public health nurses, acquired in an academic setting at the baccalaureate level, would improve self-reported functions and competencies of public health nurses. This study was based on King's (1981) conceptual model for continuing nursing education and her Theory of Goal Attainment. This model depicts the interrelatedness and importance of nurses continuing their nursing education which leads to effective goal setting and attainment with clients and improved competency in practice. Participants for this study were 21 public health nurses: a nonrandomized, convenience sample of 11 entry level public health nurses in the treatment group and a randomized, computer-selected sample of 10 public health nurses selected for the control group. The nurses in the treatment group attended, with generic baccalaureate nursing students, 10 preselected classes about community health nursing in a university setting. Both the treatment and iv control groups were given quantitative pretest and posttest questionnaires and a qualitative posttest questionnaire. The hypothesis was: Participation in an academic community health nursing program will improve elements of self-reported functions and competencies of entry level public health nurses. Since there was significance at the .05 level in some elements, the hypothesis was accepted. Of the 14 6 function and competency variables measured quantitatively, only 11 were significantly documented (7 in the treatment group and 4 in the control group). Qualitative analyses were positive for the socialization process with peers and instructors but negative for course content regarding the role of the public health nurse. Implications for clinical practice, nursing education, and research were suggested. Recommendations for further research were offered.
Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)
Dr. Mary Patricia Curtis
Powell, Charlotte, "Effects of an Academic Community Health Nursing Program on Self-Reported Functions and Competencies of Entry Level Public Health Nurses" (1990). MSN Research Projects. 99.