Role Strain in Male Diploma Nursing Students

People often need to comply with the perceived norms about their gender to completely accept their identity. Because nursing is often perceived as a female profession, male nurses might suffer from a role strain.

To find out whether experience role strain, and what factors it is connected to, in order to be able to address the problem.

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Research question or hypothesis
The author provides four research questions, the first of which being 1) Do male nursing students experience role strain?; and the other three aimed at determining whether there is an association 2) between age, amount of education, , and role strain, 3) between year of program and role strain, and 4) between and role strain among nursing students who are males (Baker, 2001, p. 378).

Review of the literature
There is little literature related to the problem; the article utilizes 12 sources, most of which are theoretical literature. The research which most closely looked into role strain among men in the profession found out that experienced male RNs did not suffer from role strain (Egeland & Brown, 1988). Baker (2001), however, stresses that the recorded absence of role strain is likely to be the result of coping mechanisms developed by these men; had they not developed such mechanisms, they would probably have quitted the profession. Therefore, the study by Egeland and Brown (1988) does not indicate the absence of role strain in male nursing students or recently graduated male nurses.

Theory or theoretical framework used in the study
The author utilizes a sociological theoretical framework, according to which role strain consists of four elements; however, only one of them, the role conflict, is used; the role conflict is experienced by a person that is subjected to more than one inconsistent role expectations which cannot be fulfilled at the same time.

Students of 15 Ontario community college nursing schools; one of these schools refused to take part, so only 14 schools participated.

Sample population
Male nursing students. 184 of 476 questionnaires were returned, which means the response rate was 39%.

Age range was 19-49, mean age=28.1, SD=6.8 years. 46% of respondents were first-year, 34% second-year, and 19% third-year students. According to BSRI, 17% of respondents were undifferentiated, 18% feminine, 24% androgynous, 41% masculine.

Have the subjects rights been ensured? Confidentiality?
The participation was voluntary and anonymous; the data was also treated confidentially.

Measurement tools
BSRI was employed to determine the sex-role category of respondents as they perceived it (Bem, 1981). The Total Role Strain Scale (TRSS) was utilized to determine the severity of role strain; it uses 35 statements which the respondents were to describe as true or false for them by using a 5-point Likert scale (Egeland & Brown, 1988).

Are reliability and validity issues regarding the tool described?
BSRIs reliability is warranted by referring to numerous previous studies of the tool. TRSS is also validated by referencing to preceding research.

A standardized questionnaire was sent to the students.

Data analysis
Descriptive statistics were employed. The means and SD for role strain were compared to age, level of education, year of study, and the via BSRI by employing simple linear regression and a coefficient of determination (p<0.05, N=184). A one-way ANOVA with Fishers positively last significant difference test was applied to questions 2-4.

Findings significant to nursing?
Findings: male nurses often experienced mild to moderately high role strain (mean=2.4, SD=0.5); there is a correlation between the role strain and other variables. The results are significant to nursing, for role strain may severely affect male nurses (potential, students, and young practitioners) and discourage them from this profession.

Are there implications suggested for nursing practice, nursing education and nursing research?
Implications: nursing should be viewed as an acceptable profession for both sexes, which includes education, media presence, and marketing.

Are there recommendations made for further research?
Recommendations: determine why and how the level of masculinity relates to role strain; correct and specify the scale of role strain; study how men cope with role strain and whether they are conscious of it; support the findings by research of female nurses.

Limitations of the study
No limitations are mentioned; however, it is apparent that the response rate of 39% could not be explained in the study.



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