The availability of education on death and dying: a survey of U.S. nursing schools

Death Educ. Summer 1979;3(2):131-42. doi: 10.1080/07481187908252946.


A stratified random sample of 226 U.S. nursing schools was surveyed to determine the extent and nature of current death education training for nursing students. Of the 205 responding schools, 5 percent reported offering a required death and dying course, while an additional 39.5 percent indicated that a death and dying course was available for their students on an elective basis. The authors challenge the current pedagogical approach toward death education in U.S. nursing schools. They propose the need for the development of a model that would formally link a death education course, or courses, with the clinical phase of training. It is hypothesized that such an approach would enhance the nursing students' recognition and management of their feelings regarding death and dying and therefore result in more effective means of relating to terminally ill patients.

MeSH terms

  • Attitude to Death
  • Curriculum*
  • Education, Nursing*
  • Humans
  • Nurse-Patient Relations
  • Schools, Nursing
  • Terminal Care / psychology*
  • United States