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Examining the knowledge, attitude and use of research by nurses


  • ANN BONNER MA, PhD, B App Sc (Nursing), RN, MRCNA,

    1. Senior Lecturer, School of Nursing Sciences, James Cook University, Cairns
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  • JENNY SANDO MHPEd, DipTeach (Nursing), GradDipBusiness, Grad Cert Public Sector Management, RN, RM, NICC

    1. Assistant Director of Nursing, Education/Research, Cairns Base Hospital, Cairns, Australia
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Ann Bonner
School of Nursing and Midwifery
Charles Sturt University
Locked Bag 588
Wagga Wagga
NSW 2678


Aim  This study sought to determine the knowledge, attitudes and use of research by nurses.

Background  There is little evidence about whether nurses are aware of using research and how much research they use in their clinical practice.

Method  Using a descriptive design, 347 registered and Enrolled Nurses completed the Edmonton Research Orientation Survey.

Results  Senior Nurse Managers were more likely to have a positive attitude towards research, and completion of university subjects on nursing research was significant in determining attitude and knowledge of research. All nurses, regardless of position identified barriers to performing research.

Conclusion  Nurses require specific research education, clinical nursing leadership and work environments conducive to ensure practice is evidenced-based.

Implications for nursing management  A positive attitude towards research by Senior Nurse Managers has the potential to influence other nurses in establishing an active nursing research culture and promote evidence-based practice in the workplace.