Research utilisation and critical thinking among newly graduated nurses: predictors for research use. A quantitative cross-sectional study
Article first published online: 20 JUN 2011
© 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Journal of Clinical Nursing
Special Issue: European Doctoral Conference in Nursing
Volume 20, Issue 17-18, pages 2436–2447, September 2011
How to Cite
Wangensteen, S., Johansson, I. S., Björkström, M. E. and Nordström, G. (2011), Research utilisation and critical thinking among newly graduated nurses: predictors for research use. A quantitative cross-sectional study. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 20: 2436–2447. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2702.2010.03629.x
- Issue published online: 10 AUG 2011
- Article first published online: 20 JUN 2011
- Accepted for publication: 9 October 2010
- critical thinking;
- nurse education;
- regression analyses;
- research utilisation
Aim. The aim was to describe research utilisation among newly graduated nurses and to explore critical thinking dispositions and other individual and contextual factors as possible predictors for research use.
Background. Nurses are expected to be research users, and variations in research utilisation are explained by individual and contextual factors. To our knowledge, critical thinking dispositions have not earlier been explored as predictors for research use.
Design. A cross-sectional design was chosen.
Methods. Data collection was carried out from October 2006 to April 2007 using the Research Utilization Questionnaire (RUQ) and the California Critical Thinking Disposition Inventory (CCTDI). The response rate was 33% (n = 617). Pearson’s chi-square test and regression analyses were used for statistical calculations.
Results. The respondents reported a positive attitude towards research, but only 24% (n = 148) were defined as research users. A significantly higher proportion of research users reported high critical thinking scores. Critical thinking explained 20% of the variance in attitude towards research and 11% of the variance in research use. Availability and support to implement research findings was the second strongest predictor for research use.
Conclusions. Critical thinking, a significant predictor for attitude towards research and for the use of research, should be recognised and strengthened in nursing education and clinical practice. Contextual factors seem to be important for newly graduated nurses’ use of research.
Relevance to clinical practice. Nurse leaders play an important role in nurturing newly graduated nurses’ critical thinking and assisting them in transferring their positive attitude towards research into research use. Nurse educators play a significant role in supporting, challenging and supervising nursing students to be critical thinkers and strong believers in research utilisation.