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Title: Commitment in students training for caring professions : a focus on student nurses' experience of support
Author: Clements, Andrew James
ISNI:       0000 0004 2734 3310
Awarding Body: University of Bedfordshire
Current Institution: University of Bedfordshire
Date of Award: 2012
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This thesis reports a mixed-method investigation into the relationship between training experiences and commitment in students training for a caring profession such as nursing. There are recruitment and retention difficulties in healthcare care professions (Storey, Cheater, Ford and Leese, 2009) and on nursing courses (Waters, 2006). While extensive research has examined the retention of student nurses, little is known about the antecedents, experience and impact of work commitment in student nurses. The findings of such research have the potential to inform interventions and enhance support structures to improve retention in students training for the caring professions. This programme of research initially aimed to explore the experiences of students training for caring professions, with particular focus placed on nursing students, together with how these experiences relate to commitment. Lecturers and students participated in semi-structured interviews in study 1 and 2 respectively. Issues were identified relating to support, such as peer support and staff-student relationships during placement, as being important to understanding the development and maintenance of commitment in students. Quantitative work in study 3 demonstrated that affective commitment was positively related with wellbeing and help-seeking behaviours, and negatively with turnover intentions. Perceived support was positively related to satisfaction with experiences of training, affective commitment, and help-seeking behaviours. In a longitudinal study (study 4) affective commitment and work-related anxiety-contentment were found to decrease, and turnover intentions increase, between time 1 and time 2, before and after a work placement. Further, satisfaction with placement experiences appeared to causally influence affective commitment. However, study 4 provided only limited support to the findings of study 3, partly due to its limited sample. The findings of this programme of research suggest that placement experiences have important implications for the development and maintenance of student commitment to nursing. An intervention following placement could assist in re-establishing student commitment to nursing if required. It is argued more broadly that it would be of benefit for nursing educators to manage student commitment in order to enhance retention, wellbeing and satisfaction amongst students. These findings also have the potential to enhance insight into the nature and impact of commitment in students training for other caring professions.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: B700 Nursing ; nursing education ; student retention ; student commitment ; caring professions