Predicting factors of positive orientation and attitudes towards nursing: A quantitative cross-sectional study

Yvonne Ten Hoeve, Stynke Castelein, Wiebren Jansen, Gerard Jansen, Petrie Roodbol

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11 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Previous studies have identified various reasons for students to choose a career in nursing. Students at the start of their programme hold a great variety of images and perceptions of nursing which can affect their orientation and attitudes towards their future profession.

Objectives: This paper aims to examine nursing students' orientation and attitudes towards nursing at the beginning of their educational programme, and to explore predictors of positive orientation and attitudes.

Design: The study used a quantitative cross-sectional design.

Settings: A survey was conducted among first-year nursing students at four nursing universities of applied sciences in the Netherlands.

Participants: Questionnaires were administered to all students enrolled in a bachelor of nursing programme (n = 1414) at these universities.

Methods: Respondents completed a survey consisting of: 1) Nursing Orientation Tool, 2) Nursing Attitude Questionnaire, and 3) demographic data such as gender, living status, nursing experience, preliminary training, first-choice programme, and career choice. Kruskal Wallis tests, with post hoc Mann Whitney U tests, were used to compare group scores. Multiple regression was performed to investigate predictors of positive orientation and attitudes towards nursing.

Results: Students in this study sample (n = 1244) strongly agreed with statements related to caring, nursing expertise, professional nursing knowledge and the application of this knowledge. Predictors of positive orientation and attitudes towards nursing include having nursing/caring experience, indicating nursing as the first choice for study, preliminary vocational training, and a desire to make a career in nursing.

Conclusions: Data from this survey suggest a link between personal and environmental characteristics and motivations to select nursing as a career. Understanding which factors predict positive orientation and attitudes towards nursing could offer educators a tool in the recruitment and selection assessment of new students. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-117
Number of pages7
JournalNurse education today
Publication statusPublished - May-2016


  • Attitude
  • Orientation
  • Nursing students
  • Recruitment
  • Survey

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