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Int J Nurs Stud. 2008 Jun;45(6):837-45. Epub 2007 Feb 12.

The effects of a coaching project in nursing on the coaches' training motivation, training outcomes, and job performance: an experimental study.

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  • 1Department of Nursing, Tel Aviv University, Isreal.



Coaching is known to benefit both the trainees and the coaches, yet research in nursing has mainly focused on the benefits to the trainees. There is little knowledge regarding the psycho-educational effects of being a coach.


To determine the effects of participation in a coaching project in nursing, on the coaches' training motivation, skills acquisition, self-efficacy, professional attitudes, transfer of training and professional performance. It was hypothesized that participation in the project would significantly improve all these outcomes among the coaches but not in a control group.


An experimental study.


An innovative educational program was instituted over the last 10 years in an academic School of Nursing in Israel. Recent graduates in nursing (i.e., coaches) assisted junior students in their studies.


All graduates of one class were randomly assigned to either the experimental (22 coaches) or control group (30 similar graduates who would not be coaches). The groups were similar in the demographic details and grade-point average. Research instruments included self-report measures and performance in a simulation test (Objective Structured Clinical Examination).


Compared with the control group the coaches improved in training motivation, self-efficacy and behavioral transfer of several nursing skills. Participation also prevented deterioration of some skills (e.g., medication management, communication skills). This stability was in contrast with the decline in most outcomes in the control group. The coaches also obtained positive behavioral transfer and demonstrated superior professional performance (OSCE). Professional attitudes were not affected.


Participation in the project enabled the coaches to enhance some of their professional skills, and improve their training motivation and self-efficacy in performing complex nursing skills. Coaching made an important contribution in facilitating the nurses' passage from school to the professional work field and could be a form of staff development.

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