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Nurse Educ Today. 2018 Dec;71:22-25. doi: 10.1016/j.nedt.2018.08.015. Epub 2018 Aug 24.

Integrating spiritual care into nursing education and practice: Strategies utilizing Open Journey Theory.

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Azusa Pacific University, 701 E. Foothill Blvd., Azusa, CA 91702, USA. Electronic address:
VID Specialized University, Faculty of Health Bergen, Ulriksdal 10, 5009 Bergen, Norway. Electronic address:


Throughout nursing, spirituality is a recognized domain of patient care, but nurses feel ill prepared by their nursing education to provide care that is spiritual in nature to patients and their families. Incorporating spiritual care into nursing curricula is challenging in light of the amount of topics for healthcare learning. Open Journey Theory is based on the merging of two grounded theories, one teaching and one learning theory, and is the suggested framework for integrating spirituality and spiritual care across all levels of nursing education. Specially chosen readings (books, articles), activities (role-plays, discussion groups), and assignments (journaling, writing papers, giving reports) can be integrated into already existing courses. By utilizing the three stages of preparing, connecting, and reflecting to frame student learning, nurse educators can introduce and build on spiritual concepts from the simple to the complex over the course of the entire nursing program.

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