Facilitating the transition from a nursing student to a Registered Nurse in the final clinical practicum: a scoping literature review

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Abstract

Background:

Transition from a nursing student to a Registered Nurse is a stressful and challenging process. Different postgraduate residency and orientation programmes have been developed to ease the first year of employment, but less attention has been paid to pregraduate programmes and how the final clinical practicum of nursing education should be conducted to facilitate this transition.

Aim:

To review the empirical studies concerning interventions that aim to facilitate the transition from nursing student to Registered Nurse in the final clinical practicum of nursing education. The aim was to scrutinise the structures and contents of the interventions and factors connected with the facilitated transition.

Method:

A scoping literature review was conducted with systematic searches in three electronic databases: CINAHL, MEDLINE and ERIC. The searches were limited to studies that were written in English, had available abstract and were published between 2005 and 2016. Two researchers assessed the studies regarding their eligibility with reference to the inclusion and exclusion criteria, and 17 articles were included in this review. Inductive content analysis was used to categorise the contents of studies.

Results:

The structures of the interventions described included: the participation, learning environment, amount of clinical work, supervisor criteria and supervision methods. The contents of the interventions included supervisor support, transition supportive learning activities and the student's practicum duties. The factors that were connected with facilitated transition were the quality of the supervision, adjusting to a professional nurse's role, achieved comfort and confidence and achieved competence.

Conclusion:

This scoping review offers insight into the diversity of interventions facilitating transition implemented in the final clinical practicum of nursing education. In order to unify these practices and determine the elements necessary to include, studies with stronger designs need to be conducted.

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