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Research awareness: managerial challenges for nurses in the Republic of Ireland


Fiona Timmins
School of Nursing and Midwifery
24 D’Olier Street
Dublin 2


timmins f., McCabe c. & McSherry r. (2012) Journal of Nursing Management20, 224–235
Research awareness: managerial challenges for nurses in the Republic of Ireland

Background  In spite of the growing body of literature, the reality of getting research into practice remains problematic.

Objective  The present study aimed to establish contemporary levels of research awareness among nurses in Ireland.

Population, sample, setting  A random sample of 234 registered nurses (RNs).

Methods  A self-report survey Research Awareness Questionnaire (RAQ) was used to collect data in March 2005.

Results  Most agreed (92%) that research can improve patient care and 93% agreed that it is the way forward to change clinical practice. Most nurses’ perceived research as being integral to their role. However, 71% of the nurses within the present study indicated that they had insufficient support and encouragement from peers and professionals. Similarly, 69.2% indicated insufficient support from management.

Conclusions  Consistent with other countries, nurses in Ireland have a positive attitude towards evidence-based nursing but face many obstacles which include a lack of time, support, knowledge and confidence.

Implications for nursing management  Nurse managers have a vital role in the use and dissemination of research among staff. It is imperative that nurse managers have clinical expertise, research awareness training, and awareness to promote research-based practice and attempt to provide positive role modelling in addition to protected time for research efforts.