The Lived Experience of Practicing Accelerated Degree Nurses

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 Lisa Hennessy has been a nurse for over 30 years and has spent most of her career in nursing education.  She joined the UTEP School of Nursing in 2005 and taught/directed the Fast Track accelerated second degree program until May of 2012. She is currently an assistant clinical professor, teaching in the traditional BSN program at UTEP.  She recently completed a PhD in Nursing from New Mexico State University and is presenting the results of her dissertation research at this conference. 


 Session Overview:

This session will present findings from  an interpretive phenomenological research study aimed at exploring the lived experience of nurses educated in accelerated second degree bachelor of science in nursing (ASD-BSN) programs.  The method used to investigate the phenomenon was based on the philosophy of Martin Heidegger, as articulated by Patricia Benner (1994) and Marlene Zichi Cohen, David L. Kahn, and Richard H. Steeves (2000).  The sample for this study was purposive in nature and drawn from registered nurses practicing in the southwestern United States who were educated in an ASD-BSN program. The results included the emergence of four major themes and a model of ASD-BSN nursing practice. The themes which emerged were the Headwaters, Tributaries and Turbulence, the Rolling River, and the Delta.  This study adds to professional nursing’s understanding of how ASD-BSN prepared nurses experience their careers as professional nurses in terms of their motivation to become nurses, how they experience their nursing practice, and how they interact with the nursing profession.  Based on this understanding, indications for ASD-BSN education, employment orientation, management, and career progression were identified.



 Session Objectives:

1. Review existent nursing literature regarding RNs educated in accelerated second degree bachelor of science in nursing (ASD BSN) programs.

2. Relate the demographic characteristics of the sample which was studied in this research project

3. Discuss the four domains of Hennessy’s River System Model of Accelerated Second Degree BSN nursing practice.

4. Identify implications for professional nursing arising from this research, and areas for future nursing research related to accelerated second degree BSN nursing practice.

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