The measurement of nurses' attitudes towards nursing research and the research environment in clinical settings



  • Professional nurses in newly developed clinical nurse researcher roles may initially need to focus on determining the climate for research within the clinical setting. The purposes of this descriptive study were to describe the attitudes of nurses towards nursing research and the research environment, and to determine the strengths and weaknesses among nurse attitudes that could be used to implement more effectively a clinical nursing research programme.
  • Nurses employed at an urban private hospital (n=144) completed a demographic profile, Attitudes Towards Nursing Research Scale and Nursing Research Environment Scale (present and future). The typical respondent was 39 years old, female, BSN prepared, and had been employed full time in nursing for about 12 years. Sixty-two nurses (43%) had some previous experience with research.
  • Nurses' attitudes towards research were moderately positive, significantly higher by educational degree, and higher for nurses with research experience. A significant difference existed in nurses' perceptions of the present and desired future research environment. Nurses desired an environment that would be more conducive to conducting research than their current environment. The greatest perceived discrepancies between present and future environments were related to time and funding for conducting research. The findings are the basis for presenting implementation strategies for clinical nursing research programmes. However, due to a 29% response rate, findings must be interpreted with caution.