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J Nurs Educ. 1998 Feb;37(2):61-70.

Discovering confidence in clinical reasoning and critical thinking development in baccalaureate nursing students.

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School of Health and Human Services, Division of Nursing, California State University, Sacramento 95819-6096, USA.


The purpose of this preliminary investigation was to discover students' experiences of clinical reasoning and critical thinking development. Findings are reported from one group of baccalaureate nursing students participating in a clinical reasoning course. Narrative approaches were used to reveal how students experience their developing reasoning skills. Class videotapes and reflective logs in which students described their reasoning and responses to others' reasoning provided data. An interpretive phenomenological approach was used to derive a beginning understanding of the experiences of students' developing clinical reasoning and critical thinking. Confidence emerged as a significant aspect of students' experiences. This report of the investigation focuses on only one aspect of clinical reasoning and critical thinking, namely, students' perceptions of threats to confidence and ways of building confidence.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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