Evaluation of a cultural competence educational programme


  • Angela Cooper Brathwaite MN PhD RN,

  • Basanti Majumdar MSc MEd PhD RN

Angela Cooper Brathwaite,
Durham Region Health Department,
Public Health Nursing & Nutrition,
1615 Dundas St East,
Suite 210,
Whitby L1N 2L1,
E-mail: angela.cooperbrathwaite@region.durham.on.ca


Aim.  This paper reports a study, which evaluated the effectiveness of a cultural competence educational programme to increase Public Health Nurses’ cultural knowledge.

Background.  Cultural competence has great significance for practising nurses and has become a priority and commitment of the Nursing profession. Public Health Nurses interact regularly with clients from a variety of culturally diverse backgrounds. Thus, there is a need for an integrated programme with theoretical and experiential knowledge related to cultural competence for PHNs to enhance their knowledge and skills to better meet the needs of the population.

Design.  This study used a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods for data collection. A one-group Repeated Measures design was used to evaluate the effectiveness of the educational programme.

Method.  The sample consisted of 76 Public Health Nurses who attended a cultural competence educational programme, which was offered over five consecutive weeks, of 2 hours duration and reinforced by a booster session at 1 month postimplementation of the programme. Cultural knowledge was measured on the Cultural Knowledge Scale, which was a valid, reliable, 25-item Likert scale. Data were collected at four points in time and were analysed with repeated measures analysis of variance. Qualitative data were content analysed.

Results.  Findings revealed that the intervention was effective [Wilks’ Lambda was F(3,69) = 142·02, P < 0·01] in increasing the nurses’ cultural knowledge. Qualitative results complemented the quantitative findings. Participants reported that the programme was effective in increasing their cultural knowledge.

Conclusion.  Although Public Health Nurses, who attended the educational programme increased their cultural knowledge, these findings are not generalizable to nurses working in other settings. However, the programme has clinical utility and could be adapted and given to nurses in other settings.