Clinical Nurses Transitioning Into a Faculty Role: A Cultural Analysis of the Nursing Profession, the Academic Discipline of Nursing, and the Academic Professorate

by Schriner, Cheryl L

Abstract (Summary)
Nursing faculty are initially socialized into the culture of the nursing profession and then must transition into the culture of the academic discipline of nursing as they assume their new professorial role. This study explored how cultural similarities and differences influenced the transition of clinical nurses into a faculty role. The study was guided by Peterson and Spencer’s (1990) model of organizational culture and Schlossberg’s (1995) adult transition theory. A qualitative design focused on a phenomenological method of ethnographic inquiry was utilized. Multiple methods of data collection, including document review, interviews, and participant observation, were used to examine elements of culture. Six themes emerged from the cross-case comparative data analysis including: (a) stressors and facilitators of transition, (b) deficient role preparation, (c) changing student culture, (d) realities of clinical teaching and practice, (e) hierarchy and reward, and (f) cultural expectation versus cultural reality. Study results led to the following conclusions. First, cultural dissonance exists in new nursing faculty as nurses adjust to a faculty role based on the values they bring from clinical practice. Second, cultural dissonance creates conflict in nursing faculty that influences the transition of nurses into academe. Third, access to faculty mentors who understand the issue of cultural dissonance will facilitate nurses’ transition into faculty roles. Fourth, cultural dissonance can be improved through formal education and socialization to the faculty role. Finally, colleges of nursing must adapt to the values inherent in the nursing profession. Implications for policy and practice include providing clear expectations for the faculty role, increasing the availability of programs in nursing education, increasing access to faculty role models, improving resources and support for clinical faculty, and creating a reward structure based on values inherent in the nursing profession. The nursing profession is experiencing a shortage of new faculty at the same time current faculty are building the level of doctoral preparation expected to fulfill the norms of other academic programs. An understanding of how cultural dissonance affects the transition of nurses into faculty roles is of special importance to higher education administrators due to the escalating shortage of nursing faculty throughout the country.
Bibliographical Information:


School:University of Toledo

School Location:USA - Ohio

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:higher education nursing culture faculty transition socialization


Date of Publication:01/01/2004

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