Abstract Ideology plays a major role in developing theory, guiding education, and directing practice in nursing. This study investigated the opinions of community health nurse educators regarding specific elements of community health nursing ideology and its relationship to the educators' opinions about the appropriateness of existing theory for professional use. The majority of participants agreed that a specific set of beliefs can be called a community health nursing ideology. Covariant factor analysis indicated that it is not a undimensional, internally consistent single set of beliefs or values, but rather is a set of two types of values, one focusing on the individual and the other on society. Individually oriented beliefs were positively related to satisfaction with existing theory. Socially oriented beliefs were negatively related to satisfaction with existing theory, but the relationship was not statistically significant. Anyone engaged in developing community health nursing theory would do well to consider which ideologic model is undergirding the process.