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Teaching to prepare undergraduate nursing students for palliative care: Nurse educators’ perspectives
The Sahlgrenska Academy, Institute of health and care sciences, University of Gothenburg; Administration for the elderly, nursing and care, Department of Quality and development, The City of Gothenburg. (PraCscisgruppen)
Marie Cederschiöld University, Department of Health Care Sciences, Palliative Research Centre, PRC. (PraCscisgruppen)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9559-1939
Faculty of caring sciences, work life and social welfare, department of caring sciences, University of Borås; Dep of Oncology, Inst of Clinical Sciences, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg. (PraCscisgruppen)
Marie Cederschiöld University, Department of Health Care Sciences, Palliative Research Centre, PRC. Department of Health Care Sciences/Nursing Sciences, Mid Sweden University, Östersund. (PraCscisgruppen)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9623-5813
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2023 (English)In: BMC Nursing, ISSN 1472-6955, E-ISSN 1472-6955, ISSN 1472-6955, Vol. 22, article id 338Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background Education in palliative care for undergraduate nursing students is important for the competence of general nurses. Newly graduated nurses have reported challenges in coping with their own emotions when encountering dying persons. They express a wish for more education before they graduate, particularly in psychosocial and existential areas, such as having difficult conversations and supporting grieving persons. Despite awareness of the importance of palliative care education for nurses, there is a lack of knowledge on how to effectively convey this knowledge to students. The aim of the present study was to explore how teaching to prepare undergraduate nursing students for palliative care practice is conducted in Sweden.

Methods Educators from 22 Bachelor of Science nursing programmes in Sweden were interviewed about how they conducted palliative care education, with a focus on teaching situations that have been successful or less successful. The interviews were transcribed and analysed using qualitative inductive content analysis.

Results Educators described that they play a crucial role in preparing undergraduate nursing students to face death and dying and to care for persons at the end of life. In the main theme, “Transforming person-centred palliative care into student-centred education”, educators described how they incorporated the person-centred palliative approach into their teaching. Educators used a dynamic style of teaching where they let the students’ stories form the basis in a co-constructed learning process. The educators trusted the students to be active partners in their own learning but at the same time they were prepared to use their expert knowledge and guide the students when necessary. Discussion and reflection in small groups was described as being essential for the students to achieve a deeper understanding of palliative care and to process personal emotions related to encountering dying and grieving individuals.

Conclusions This study suggests that palliative care education for undergraduate nursing students benefits from teaching in smaller groups with room for discussion and reflection. Furthermore, gains are described relating to educators taking the role of facilitators rather than traditional lecturers, being flexible and ready to address students’ emotions. Educators also draw on their experiences as palliative care nurses in their teaching practices.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Nature, 2023. Vol. 22, article id 338
Keywords [en]
Nurse education, Teaching approach, Student-centred education, Pedagogy, Palliative care, End of life care
National Category
Nursing Learning
Research subject
The Individual in the Welfare Society, Palliative Care
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:esh:diva-10443DOI: 10.1186/s12912-023-01493-5PubMedID: 37759221OAI: oai:DiVA.org:esh-10443DiVA, id: diva2:1804994
Available from: 2023-10-15 Created: 2023-10-15 Last updated: 2023-10-16Bibliographically approved

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Österlind, JaneMelin-Johansson, ChristinaLundh Hagelin, CarinaHjorth, Elin

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