Category Archives: Nursing Theory

How to Choose a Theory for Nursing Practice

All undergraduate nursing students take a nursing theory/nursing philosophy course. Masters and doctoral students take advanced courses in theory. What’s the point? To use theory for nursing practice, of course! Many students wonder about the purpose of nursing theory — and just theory in general. Is it just an academic

How to Figure Out Your Personal Philosophy of Nursing

One of the most common assignments in nursing school is to help students articulate their personal values and beliefs about their nursing career — in other words, writing a personal philosophy of nursing. In this post, I’ll give you some tips to help you consider how to uncover your true

Borrowed Theory in Nursing Theory Development

Nursing theory is not that old. Other than Florence Nightingale’s Notes on Nursing in 1860, nursing theories only started to be developed in the 1950s. So was nursing atheoretical until then? No. Nurses “borrowed” theories from other disciplines to inform nursing practice. Nurses borrowed theories from psychology, physiology, sociology, medicine, physics, and organizational

How to Identify Assumptions, Beliefs, and Values in Nursing Theory

Assumptions, beliefs, and values are terminology used when describing the foundation of nursing theories. Theories are used to describe, explain, and predict nursing phenomena, that is, the nursing metaparadigm concepts. Nursing theory is the theorist’s worldview or personal perspective of how the nursing world works.   Understanding the theorist’s assumptions, beliefs, and

What is the Nursing Metaparadigm?

Metaparadigms. Theoretical frameworks. Conceptual models. Assumptions. Propositions. Concepts. These are all terms that every nursing student needs to understand and apply for nursing theory class. This post will explain what a metaparadigm is, which phenomena define the four nursing metaparadigms, and provide examples of the metaparadigm concepts from selected nursing theorists.  If you

How to Use a Theory to Frame Your Research Study

This post will explain how to use a theory to frame a research study.  General recommendations that can be used for any research will be shared.  Theories, Frameworks, and Models – Oh My! Frameworks to guide research can be based on philosophies, theories, or conceptual models. Every research study has

5 Tips on Writing a Theory Paper

Several readers have asked me about providing a step-by-step on writing a theory paper. As every instructor has different criteria, that is a hard thing to do! But I think I can give some guidelines that I would give my students, that may be helpful for your theory paper assignments.

What is a Theoretical Framework or Conceptual Model?

I’ve gotten several requests to explain what a theoretical framework really is and how it’s different than a conceptual model. This post will cover why theoretical frameworks and conceptual models are important in nursing, explain the difference between the two, and provide a simple example of how research is used

Academic “Fluff” or Practical Knowledge? Theory-Guided Nursing Practice

Click Here for Your Free Nursing Theory and Philosophy: Terms & Concepts Guide! Having taught Nursing Theory, I know that nursing theory has a bad rap with students – undergraduate and graduate!  Theory-guided nursing practice is encouraged to underlie clinical practice, but the terminology is confusing and the concepts seem

Theoretical Frameworks for Nursing Research, Practice, and Education

This Podcast and notes define the difference between theoretical frameworks and conceptual models, defines conceptual and operational definitions, introduces the nursing metaparadigm concepts, and introduces how theoretical frameworks and conceptual models guide research, practice, and education. Examples of these concepts are included. Scroll down to access the Podcast Player! Podcast