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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter October 21, 2009

Seeing With New Eyes: The Meaning of an Immersion Experience in Bangladesh for Undergraduate Senior Nursing Students

  • Hendrika J. Maltby and Sarah Abrams

Nurses must provide culturally appropriate care. A powerful strategy to enhance cultural competency is immersion. This can increase awareness of personal beliefs, values, behaviors, and learning from clients. A three week immersion experience for 17 senior undergraduate nursing students was organized in partnership with the Independent University, Bangladesh. Working with interpreters, students learned about people and healthcare through interviews and site visits. The purpose of this qualitative study was to discover the meaning of the immersion experience for nursing students through their reflective journals. These were thematically analyzed and four themes emerged: Beginning to See, Thinking about the Seen, Wanting to Change the Seen, and Transformed by the Seen. These themes combine into a framework that has been tentatively titled, Seeing Through New Eyes and will be further developed on future trips. Achieving cultural competency is a complex, long-term process that can be intensified with immersion experiences.

Published Online: 2009-10-21

©2011 Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co. KG, Berlin/Boston

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