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Abstract

The relationships among continuing education (CE) of nurses, their professional orientation, and selected background characteristics were examined. It was hypothesized that attitudes toward, and participation in, CE were related to professional orientation and not to background. Data were obtained from 82% of a random sample of 395 currently registered nurses living in a midwestern state. The results of a multiple regression analysis were consistent with the study hypotheses. Attitudes toward CE were predicted best by attitudes toward the professionalization of nursing and by future career intentions. Participation in CE was predicted best by current employment status, formal education beyond the initial nursing program, and independent learning activities. None of the four background variables (age, initial nursing program, parental status, and marital status) was a significant predictor. CE was seen, therefore, as an activity of professionally oriented nurses.