Enrolled nurse transition: Development of a university preparation program for direct entry to second year

Patricia Logan, Jennifer Cox, Judith Anderson, David van Reyk, Elspeth Hillman, Amy Johnston, Judith Salvage-Jones

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report (public)

82 Downloads (Pure)


Executive summary
Project context
Every year, hundreds of enrolled nurses (ENs) commence pre-registration degrees in over 30 tertiary institutions across Australia.
The knowledge and expertise that registered nurses (RNs) bring to their workplace is critical in maintaining the standard of care for patients in hospitals and health facilities, community health centres, defence forces, primary and secondary industries, insurance and workplace health and safety.
In recognition of their at-work experience, enrolled nurses are given direct entry to the second year of university. As a result, they miss well-resourced and well-established first-year entry programs. In addition, many ENs:
•have not studied for some time, having been in the workforce since their vocational education and training program
•study by distance
•are the first in their family to study at university
•have work and family commitments
•experience ‘science anxiety’.
All of these factors impact their first-year experience and subsequent success, and contribute to drop-out rates.
Aim of the project
Our goal is to increase the level of support for EN transitioning to an RN degree. We want them to be prepared, confident and, most of all, inspired in their first year.
We also want to increase the level of support for anyone who teaches ENs.
Project approach, methodology and methods
This project was designed and delivered through collaboration between scientists, nurses, educators and information designers. This multi-discipline group:
•created a framework for a dedicated transition program
•identified core and threshold human bioscience concepts for the study of pathophysiology and pharmacology
•designed a tool for students to self-identify gaps in their knowledge
•addressed those knowledge gaps in an open access online package of resources that students can take with them wherever they go – to university, work or home – and that any university with an EN intake can utilise in its curriculum.
Consensus was essential throughout the project. The seed grant supported two face-to-face meetings of the project team held in February 2016 and September 2016. These meetings were used to determine, through discussion and consensus, the appropriate content needed.
The first-year student pedagogy and principles developed by Kift and colleagues (2009, 2010) guided the process.
A formal modified Delphi consensus approach was used to develop a list of core concepts related to each of the topics for the bioscience revision modules to be included on the website.
User experience (UX) design principles were used to develop the website information architecture.
Agile method will be used to roll out the website, with usage and feedback from users informing further development.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAustralia
PublisherAustralian Government Department of Education and Training
Commissioning bodyAustralian Government Department of Education and Training
Number of pages28
ISBN (Print)9781760515843
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Grant Number

  • SD15-5077


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