Empathic anger in junior nursing students

J Nurs Educ. 2011 May;50(5):242-7. doi: 10.3928/01484834-20100930-01. Epub 2010 Sep 30.


The ideal clinical experience fosters development of psychomotor, cognitive, and affective skills while affording initial socialization into the profession. It is expected that during these experiences, nursing students will encounter illustrative exemplars of caring and professional values. The primary stressors during initial clinical experiences arise from issues related to performance and socialization. Nursing students view a good relationship with the RNs at the clinical site as the most crucial influence on their professional growth and development. Even more distressing to students than being treated poorly themselves is watching patients receive uncaring treatment. Students' sadness and anger provoked by perceived uncaring treatment blends to form empathic distress. A content analysis of an assigned narrative from junior nursing students explores empathic anger experienced by the students during their initial clinical rotations.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anger*
  • Empathy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Narration
  • Nurse-Patient Relations
  • Preceptorship
  • Socialization
  • Southeastern United States
  • Students, Nursing / psychology*