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International Journal of Nursing Education Scholarship

Ed. by Andrusyszyn, Mary-Anne / Cragg, Catherine Elizabeth / Goldenberg, Dolly / Iwasiw, Carroll Louise / Maltby, Hendrika J.

1 Issue per year

Keeping the Vision: Sustaining Social Consciousness with Nursing Students following International Learning Experiences

Sheryl Reimer Kirkham1 / Lynn Van Hofwegen2 / Darlane Pankratz3

1Trinity Western University,

2California State University, East Bay,

3Trinity Western University,

Citation Information: International Journal of Nursing Education Scholarship. Volume 6, Issue 1, ISSN (Online) 1548-923X, DOI: 10.2202/1548-923X.1635, January 2009

Publication History:
Published Online:
2009-01-17

In an era of globalization, increasing numbers of nursing programs are initiating international learning experiences, yet empirical data is lacking regarding long term benefits and effects of international placements. This paper presents findings from a participatory action study designed in response to this gap. Objectives were to describe student learning in international experiences, and to facilitate strategies that supported integration of this learning into personal and professional domains upon return to Canada. Seventeen students and three faculty participated over twelve months following their international experiences. Initial responses to the international experience included reports of new ways of viewing the world - often characterized by heightened social consciousness - yet in the immediate and longer-term many struggled with how to translate and sustain this learning in home settings. Considerable effort and intentionality was required to sustain social consciousness over time. Based on these findings, a preliminary framework for international experiences is presented.

Keywords: participatory action research; nursing education; international experiences; social consciousness

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