Experience of stress in psychiatric nursing students in Ireland

Nolan, George and Ryan, Dennis (2008) Experience of stress in psychiatric nursing students in Ireland. Nursing Standard, 22 (43). pp. 35-43. ISSN 00296570


Aim The aim of this study was to explore the experience of stress among psychiatric nursing students undertaking their 'internship' or final year of a four-year degree course. Method A questionnaire was administered to all 28 students in the intern year in conjunction with the 28-item version of the General Health Questionnaire. Semi-structured interviews were subsequently undertaken with four volunteers from a range of clinical locations. Findings Approximately 48% of respondents reported levels of stress above the threshold score as described by Goldberg (1978), indicating levels of distress unlikely to remit without intervention. Interview data suggested that the main sources of stress during the intern year were associated with relationships In the clinical environment; clinical workload; matching competence and responsibility; and simultaneous clinical and academic demands. Conclusion The findings should be interpreted with caution and understood within the context of the dynamic nature of nurse education in Ireland. However, the issues raised demand further enquiry to examine the structure of educational programmes, the nature of the work and the organisational culture in which the work is carried out. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]; Copyright of Nursing Standard is the property of RCN Publishing Company and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)

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