Iranian Clinical Nurses’ Activities for Self-Directed Learning: A Qualitative Study

Shahrzad Ghiyasvandian, Morteza Malekian, Mohammad Ali Cheraghi


BACKGROUND: Clinical nurses need lifelong learning skills for responding to the rapid changes of clinical settings. One of the best strategies for lifelong learning is self-directed learning. The aim of this study was to explore Iranian clinical nurses’ activities for self-directed learning.

METHODS: In this qualitative study, 23 semi-structured personal interviews were conducted with nineteen clinical nurses working in all four hospitals affiliated to Isfahan Social Security Organization, Isfahan, Iran. Study data were analyzed by using the content analysis approach. The study was conducted from June 2013 to October 2014.

FINDINGS: Study participants’ activities for self-directed learning fell into two main categories of striving for knowledge acquisition and striving for skill development. The main theme of the study was ‘Revising personal performance based on intellectual-experiential activities’.

CONCLUSIONS: Study findings suggest that Iranian clinical nurses continually revise their personal performance by performing self-directed intellectual and experiential activities to acquire expertise. The process of acquiring expertise is a linear process which includes two key steps of knowledge acquisition and knowledge development. In order to acquire and advance their knowledge, nurses perform mental learning activities such as sensory perception, self-evaluation, and suspended judgment step-by-step. Moreover, they develop their skills through doing activities like apprenticeship, masterly performance, and self-regulation. The absolute prerequisite to expertise acquisition is that a nurse needs to follow these two steps in a sequential manner.

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Global Journal of Health Science   ISSN 1916-9736(Print)   ISSN 1916-9744(Online)

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