Development Trajectories and Predictors of the Role Commitment of Nursing Preceptors

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Abstract

Background:

The commitment of nursing preceptors to their role is an important driving force that supports their clinical teaching and affects teaching quality. Role commitment undergoes dynamic development and thus changes over time. Existing studies have utilized only cross-sectional study designs and have not analyzed the changes in commitment trajectories with related factors.

Purpose:

This study aimed to investigate the development trajectories of the commitment of preceptors and to examine the predictors between the trajectories of role commitment among nursing preceptors.

Methods:

A single-group, repeated-measures design was adopted, and 59 participants completed the Commitment to the Preceptor Role Scale and the Preceptor’s Perception of Support Scale. The latent class growth analysis method was used to estimate the trajectory class patterns. The Wilcoxon rank-sum test, a nonparametric method, was used to compare the differences in demographic characteristics between the trajectories of commitment among nursing preceptors. Predictors were examined using binary logistic regression analysis.

Results:

The two-class model was the best-fitting model to describe the trajectories of nursing preceptor commitment. The two classes in this model were “low commitment,” which accounted for 90.3% of all the participants, and “high commitment,” which accounted for 9.7%. A significant difference was found between the two classes in terms of motivation for being a preceptor (p = .048). Neither demographic characteristics nor organizational support had a predictive effect on the trajectories of commitment development.

Conclusions/Implications for Practice:

This study found a low level of role commitment among new preceptors. Moreover, internal motivation was found to be a significant factor affecting the trajectories of this commitment. Therefore, institutions should foster an appropriate environment to enhance the role identity of preceptors as well as cultivate and stimulate their commitment to this role.

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