Student Theses, Dissertations and Capstones

Document Type

Dissertation - NSU Access Only

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Nursing Education

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College of Nursing

Publication Date / Copyright Date



Nova Southeastern University


Background: There is a growing need for skilled gerontological nursing care. Nursing students often fail to appreciate the importance of implementing gerontological nursing competencies. Purpose: The problem is that nursing education research on students' attitudes about gerontology has been hampered by a lack of valid and reliable instruments. Theoretical framework. This study is based on and tests the propositions of the theory of planned behavior. Methods. Qualitative interviews were conducted to determine the terms used to describe the constructs by the target population. Using these terms, an instrument was developed and subjected to tests for psychometric estimates. A pretest-posttest design was used to test the impact of an educational intervention on students' attitudes. Results. The instrument demonstrated acceptable reliability and validity. Students' scores increased significantly for attitude, subjective norm and behavioral intention regarding implementing gerontological competencies from pretest to posttest. Attitude and subjective norm predicted behavioral intention in the regression model. Conclusions: The results support that an educational intervention can positively impact nursing students' intent to implement gerontological competencies.




Social sciences, Health and environmental sciences, Education, Gerontology, Nursing education, Psychometrics, Theory of planned behavior



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