How would you define theory?
Why is it useful?
- Related concepts, statements, propositions, and definitions from data and from which questions or hypotheses can be
- deduced, tested, and verified.
- Theory purports to account for or characterize some phenomenon.
- Tentative suggestions that a specific relationship exists between two concepts or propositions.
- As a hypothesis is repeatedly confirmed, it progresses to an empirical generalization and ultimately to a law.
- Proposition about the relationship between concepts in a theory that has been repeatedly validated.
- Laws are highly generalizable.
- Laws are found primarily in disciplines that deal with observable and measurable phenomena, such as chemistry and physics.
- Conversely, social and human sciences have few laws.
- Represents the worldview of a discipline – the most global perspective that subsumes more specific views and approaches to the central concepts with which the discipline is concerned.
- The metaparadigm is the ideology within which the theories, knowledge, and processes for knowing find meaning and coherence.
- Nursing’s metaparadigm is generally thought to consist of the concepts of person, environment, health, and nursing.
- A conceptual model is a set of interrelated concepts that symbolically represents and conveys a mental image of a phenomenon.
- Conceptual models of nursing identify concepts and describe their relationships to the phenomena of central concern to the discipline.
- Most complex and broadest in scope.
- Attempt to explain broad areas within a discipline and may incorporate numerous other theories.
- Non-specific and comprised of relatively abstract concepts that lack operational definitions.
What are the characteristics of a profession?
- Defined knowledge base
- Power and authority over training and education
- Altruistic service
- Code of ethics
- Lengthy socialization
- Institutionalized goal or social mission
- Group of scholars, investigators, or researchers who work to continually advance the knowledge of the profession with the goal of improving practice
- Professionals are responsible and accountable to the public for their work.
- Discipline is a branch of educational instruction or a department of learning or knowledge.
- Field of inquiry characterized by a unique perspective and a distinct way of viewing phenomena.
Characteristics of a discipline
- Distinct perspective and syntax
- Determination of what phenomena are of interest
- Determination of the context in which phenomena are viewed
- Determination of what questions to ask
- Determination of what methods of study are used
- Determination of what evidence is proof
What are differences between academic disciplines and professional disciplines?
Academic disciplines aim to "know," and their theories are descriptive in nature (physics, physiology, sociology, mathematics, history, philosophy) - not necessarily applied.
Professional disciplines are practical in nature, and their research tends to be more prescriptive and descriptive (medicine, law, nursing, social work).
Is nursing a science or a humanity? (Justify your answer)
- Science - concerned with cause and effect; characterized by observation, verifiability, and experience; hypothesis testing and experimentation are scientific methods. A PROCESS and a PRODUCT.
- Humanities (philosophy) - concerned with purpose of human life, nature of being and reality, and theory and limits of knowledge. Intuition, introspection, and reasoning are philosophical methodologies.
- Nursing is synthesized - it draws on knowledge of other established disciplines - including other practice disciplines.
4 things theory does
- Describes (e.g., theory of dying)
- Predicts (e.g., early astronomers, where stars would be in the sky)
- Controls (e.g., histamine-2 receptor agonist)
How would you describe science?
- Science - Process and Product
- Process - systematic inquiry relying on empirical observations of natural world. Questions WHY things happen in all aspects of life and world.
- Product - empirical knowledge grounded and testing in experience; result of investigative efforts. Result of questioning to explain WHY things happen the way they do.
Describe philosophies of science.
- 3 Philosophies of science:
- Rationalism - received view
- Empiricism - received view; Empirical - in the real world; what is experienced is real
- Human science/phenomenology
- Centers on descriptions derived from collectively lived experiences, interrelatedness, human interpretation, and learned reality.
- Qualitative study - "How do you feel about this?"
- Perceptions - works well in early research
- Individuals learn by being told or receiving knowledge.
- Examples:positivism, empiricism, quantitative research, classic research
- Value deductive reasoning
Mixes received and perceived views.
Ways of Knowing: Empiricism
- Scientific theories.
- What we learn from books based on scientific knowledge.
Ways of Knowing: Personal Knowledge
- Me thinking.
- What we know from taking our collective education and experiences.
Ways of Knowing: Intuitive Knowledge
- Knowledge from seeing patterns.
- Gut feelings from "signs".
Ways of Knowing: Somatic Knowledge
- Use of muscles and balance to perform a task.
- Knowing how to walk, how to balance on ice, playing the piano, starting an IV.
Ways of Knowing: Metaphysical
- Religion, beliefs.
- (Like believing in ghosts, practicing religion, etc.)
Ways of Knowing: Esthetics
- Music, beauty.
- (Ability to arrange a room to seem comfortable and appealing.)
Ways of Knowing: Moral/Ethical Knowledge
- Knowing what is right and wrong.
- Values taught to us by our parents, religion, schools, etc.
- "Do the right thing"
- Tries to discover knowledge and truth.
- Attempts to identify what is valuable and important.
Describe which philosophy of science is most congruent with your personal values and beliefs.
Describe your nursing practice.
Ex.:How do you approach your patients? What do you look for when you're performing an assessment? What expectations do you have of the patient? What does the patient expect from you, the nurse?
What is your philosophy of nursing?
What values and beliefs motivate you to be a nurse?
How do you see your role as a nurse?
How do you see nursing as distinct from other health professions?
Does nursing have its own body of knowledge or do nurses apply knowledge developed in other disciplines?
Middle Range Nursing Theory
- Relatively concrete concepts that are operationally defined and relatively concrete propositions that may be empirically tested.
- May be:
- (1) description of a particular phenomenon,
- (2) an explanation of the relationship between phenomenon, or
- (3) a prediction of effects of one phenomenon or another.
Five Stages in Development of Nursing Theory
- (1) Silent knowledge
- (2) Received knowledge
- (3) Subjective knowledge
- (4) Procedural knowledge
- (5) Constructed knowledge
Blind obedience to medical authority.
- Little attempt to develop theory.
- Research limited to collection of epidemiologic data.
Learning through listening to others.
- Theories borrowed from other disciplines.
- As nurses acquired non-nursing doctoral degrees, relied on authority of educators, sociologists, psychologists, physiologists, and anthropologists to provide answers to nursing problems.
- Research primarily education research or sociologic research.
Authority was internalized and a new sense of self emerged.
- Negative attitude toward borrowed theories and science emerged.
- Nursing scholars focused on defining nursing and on developing theories about and for nursing.
- Nursing research focused on the nurse rather than on patients and clinical situations.
Includes both separate and connected knowledge.
- Proliferation of approaches to theory development.
- Application of theory in practice was frequently underemphasized.
- Emphasis placed on procedures used to acquire knowledge, with over-attention to appropriateness of methodology, criteria for evolution, and statistical procedures for data analysis.
Integration of different types of knowledge - intuition, reason, and self-knowledge.
Nursing theory should be based on prior empirical studies, theoretical literature, patient reports of clinical experiences and feelings, and nurse scholar's intuition or related knowledge about the phenomenon of concern.
What is nursing's metaparadigm?
- Being composed of physical, intellectual, biochemical, and psychosocial needs.
- A human energy field.
- A holistic being in the world.
- An open system.
- An integrated whole.
- An adaptive system.
- A being who is greater than the sum of his/her parts.
- Ability to function independently.
- Successful adaptation to life's stressors.
- Achievement of one's full life potential.
- Unity of mind, body, and soul.
- External elements that affect the person.
- Internal and external conditions that influence the organism.
- Significant others with whom the person interacts.
- An open system with boundaries that permit the exchange of matter, energy, and information with human beings.
- Nursing is a science, art, practice discipline, and involves caring.
- Goals of nursing include care of the well/sick, assisting with self-care, helping individuals attain human potential, discovering and using nature's laws of health.
- Purposes of nursing care include:placing patient in best condition for nature to restore health, promoting adaptation of the individual, facilitating the development of interaction between nursing and patient wherein jointly-set goals are met, promoting harmony between individual and environment.
- Facilitates, supports, and assists individuals, families, communities, and societies to enhance, maintain, and recover health and to reduce and ameliorate effects of illness.
What is the relationship between theory, research, and practice?