Nurse educators' critical thinking dispositions and research utilization

Nurse Educ Pract. 2009 May;9(3):199-208. doi: 10.1016/j.nepr.2008.06.003. Epub 2008 Aug 12.


Nurse educators are becoming recognized as important facilitators of research use in the health care system, thereby contributing to improved patient and system outcomes. Currently, no published studies could be located that specifically examined critical thinking dispositions and research utilization of nurse educators. This paper reports research utilization behaviours and critical thinking dispositions of a random sample of nurse educators across a western Canadian province (n=287). Descriptive statistics and correlations were compiled for research utilization and critical thinking dispositions measures. Almost all nurse educators who participated in the study scored above the target score of 280 on the California Critical Thinking Dispositions Inventory. The majority of nurse educators (82.1%) scored 280-350, with 15.4% of them scoring above 350, indicating high critical thinking dispositions. Nurse educators scored quite high on overall research utilization (mean=4.4/5). They believe that research makes a positive difference in practice and reported using various sources of information. Our analysis indicates that there is a statistically-significant correlation between nurse educators' total critical thinking dispositions and all measures of research utilization. Education of nurse educators must include critical thinking to maximize their role in promoting research use as part of evidence-based practice.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Canada
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Faculty, Nursing*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Judgment
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nursing Research*
  • Thinking*