Shanna AkersFollow




School of Education


Doctor of Education (EdD)


Kimberly E. Little


Critical Care Nursing, Nursing Clinical, Nursing Simulation, Nursing Student Knowledge, Nursing Student Self-Efficacy


Curriculum and Instruction | Education | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Educational Methods | Higher Education | Nursing


Preparing nursing students to transition into the professional registered nurse role is the task of nurse educators. These educators must train students to function in multiple nursing specialties post-graduation, to include critical care. As more nursing graduates enter into areas such as intensive care units and emergency rooms, nurse educators must prepare them to work with critically ill patients. Increased exposure to critical care clinical experiences and simulations may be one method to prepare them for these complex, high-acuity patient situations. In order to determine whether or not a relationship exists between increased hours of experience and effects on self-efficacy and knowledge, the Nursing Student Self-Efficacy Scale (NSSES) and the Basic Knowledge Assessment Test-8 (BKAT-8) was administered to senior nursing students in a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) pre-licensure program during their final semester. Hierarchical regression analysis evaluated each variable in the regression model. Control variables included age, gender, ethnicity, prior experience, and preferred initial job placement. Predictor variables (independent variables) were clinical hours and simulation hours. Data indicates a positive relationship for each predictive variable to both the NSSES and BKAT-8. Additionally, clinical hours and simulation hours do contribute to the overall predictive model for NSSES and BKAT-8 outcomes. Practical implications and suggestions for future research are addressed.