The American Nurses Association’s Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice (3rd ed.) discusses integrating the art and science of nursing. Describe how science and art are synthesized in the practice of nursing.
The purpose of the discussion this week to help students understand how nursing is both an art and a science, and how the ANA Scope and Standards of Practice define professional nursing responsibilities. When we discuss this topic in class I often refer students to two articles, the first an older research article that studies how students interpret their nursing experiences titled Nursing Students Learn the Art and Science of Nursing. The author use the metaphor of woven cloth to illustrate that nursing includes both a warp and woof threads of art and science to weave the cloth of nursing practice. The second title Learning to Think Like the Nurse provides a great example of what new graduates feel during their first months of practice on their own. One of the big takeaways from this article is that “multiple clinical experiences, support from faculty and experienced nurses, and sharing experiences with peers were critical in the transition from student nurse to beginning practitioner” (Etheridge, 2007).
Both indicate the need for new graduate nurses to develop confidence in their decision making and nursing practice. These articles demonstrate clearly that learning content, skills, and nursing interventions is not enough, new nurses need to develop the confidence to understand human nature and to communicate therapeutically.
This class, more than any other class in the curriculum attempts to combine diverse nursing concepts into one course and demonstrate the complexity of professional nursing.
How might the art of nursing also reflect the ethics of nursing? What do you think?