• nursing;
  • education;
  • change;
  • grief;
  • adaptation

In this paper an attempt is made to illustrate the experience of lecturers in a department of nursing preparing to implement the adult branch component of the pre-registration Higher Education Diploma in Nursing Studies. The study was conducted in a college of health in England at a time when the college was only beginning to discuss the possibility of closer links with universities. It highlights the grief responses associated with change exhibited by nursing lecturers during a period of organizational upheaval and curriculum change and maps the transition through stages of adaptation over a 2-year period. The analysis of the effects of change and the coping strategies adopted by nursing lecturers presented here is most relevant to educational managers who are charged with integrating nurse education into higher education.