Coordination in nurses' listening activities and communication about patient–nurse relationships


  • Statistical assistances by Dr. John P. Buonaccorsi of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst Department of Mathematics and Statistics is gratefully acknowledged.


The purpose of this analysis was to examine whether nurses' listening behavior, especially the coordination of their nonverbal involvement activities with those of their patients, communicates information about patient–nurse relationships. Participants were 126 college women who responded to a 30-item instrument measuring relational information that was communicated to them by nurses' behavior in videotaped segments of interactions between a patient/actress and 12 nurses. Participants' responses to two consecutive interaction segments were selected for this analysis. The research team coded the patient's and nurses' listening activities, and they calculated coordination and activity rates for all interaction segments. Multiple regression analysis revealed that nurses' verbal listening activities, such as reflection, their nonverbal involvement activities, and their simultaneous coordination of nonverbal involvement activities with those of the patient predicted relational information dimensions of trust/receptivity, depth/similarity/affection, composure, and non-formality. Thus, nurses' listening behavior, including coordination, may contribute to communication about patient–nurse relationships. © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Res Nurs Health 27:447–457, 2004