A longitudinal study into the perceptions of caring and nursing among student nurses
A longitudinal study of a cohort of student nurses was undertaken in order to investigate whether changes in perceptions of nursing and caring take place and how perceptions of nursing and caring are related. The Caring Dimensions Inventory (CDI) and the Nursing Dimensions Inventory (NDI) were employed for data collection at entry to nurse education and after 12 months. There were significant changes in the scores of a range of items in both inventories which suggested that student nurses lose some of their idealism about nursing and caring after 12 months in nurse education. While the overall ranking of items in the inventories was very similar, it was possible to distinguish between the inventories at entry to training and to observe a change, particularly in the CDI, over time by means of Mokken scaling. Nursing and caring would appear to become more synonymous to the student nurses after 12 months in nurse education. Factors scores, for factors identified in the CDI in a previous study, were used to investigate whether these scores changed at 12 months into nurse education compared with entry. No significant changes were detected.