Character and Ethical Behavior of Nurses
Review TypeNone: Degree-based Submission
Repository Posting Date2019-12-20T17:29:53Z
Author(s)Godfrey, Nelda S.
Author DetailsDr. Nelda S. Godfrey, PhD, APRN, BC, FAAN
Lead Author Sigma AffliationDelta
Level of EvidenceDescriptive/Correlational
Research ApproachQuantitative Research
The purpose of this study was to examine relationships among personal normative characteristics, personal descriptive characteristics, and ethical behavior of nurses in practice. Little is known about the place of virtue theory in nursing practice and the factors that influence the nurse as moral agent. One hundred thirty-one registered nurses with at least six months' experience working in direct cam positions in one of three hospital practice settings—urban, suburban, and rural—participated in the study. Three instruments were used with the randomized sample: (a) Demographic Data Form, (b) The INSURE Survey™, an instrument used to measure attitudes of potential employees, and (c) the Ethical Behavior Test (EBT) an instrument to measure muses ethical reasoning and ethical action based on dilemmas reflective of clinical experiences. The research design was descriptive, correlational, and multivariate. The personal descriptive characteristic variables were (a) age, (b) years in nursing practice, (c) educational preparation, and (d) practice setting. The personal normative characteristic variables were the moral attitudes of (a) integrity, (b) reliability, and (c) work ethic. The ethical behavior variable was a measure of nurses' ethical reasoning. The findings showed that two variables, associate degree in nursing educational preparation, and years in nursing practice predicted higher integrity scores. None of the other variables—age, diploma or BSN/MSN educational preparation, or practice setting—predicted moral attitudes of integrity, reliability, or work ethic. On average, nurses' integrity, reliability, and work ethic scores indicated they possessed attitudes desired and rewarded in the workplace. Results of the study suggest that empirical assessment of character is complicated. Nurses' moral scores are consistent with the public trust accorded them. Recommendations for further study are made, including refinement of the EBT, and the need to involve direct-care nurses in all phases of virtue ethics research.
DescriptionThis dissertation has also been disseminated through the ProQuest Dissertations and Theses database. Dissertation/thesis number: 9962525; ProQuest document ID: 304511160. The author still retains copyright.
Advisor(s)Taylor, Susan G.
Degree GrantorUniversity of Missouri - Columbia
NotesThis item has not gone through this repository's peer-review process, but has been accepted by the indicated university or college in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the specified degree.
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