Nursing Educators' Perceptions of Teaching Information Literacy to Support Evidence-Based Practice: A Mixed-Methods Study
Concurrent Session 4
The mixed-methods study was used to examine nursing educators’ perceptions about teaching information literacy to support evidence-based practice (EBP). Data collected in two phases supported firm beliefs and confidence in teaching and utilizing EBP. The need to update educators about information literacy and EBP competencies, organizational constraints for teaching competencies and commitment to lifelong learning in nursing were themes identified. The significance of the study validated the importance for nursing educators to be knowledgeable and prepared to teach essential competencies expected of nursing graduates.
Evidence-based practice (EBP) is the standard of care in healthcare, and educators are obligated to prepare future nurses to utilize EBP supported by information literacy competencies in the 21stcentury. The purpose of the mixed-methods study was to examine educators’ perceptions and beliefs about teaching information literacy to support EBP and determine cultural factors in academia that influenced the integration of EBP. The Information Literacy for Evidence-Based Nursing Practice-Modified (ILNP-M), Evidence-Based Practice Beliefs-Educator (EBPB-E), and Organizational Culture and Readiness for School-Wide Integration of Evidence-Based Practice-Educator (OCRSIEP-E) Scales were used to collect data in Phase I from 145 educators in a south-central state. Phase II data were collected from 11 educators’ personal experiences teaching information literacy and EBP with semi-structured, recorded interviews.
Most participants reported firm beliefs and confidence in teaching and utilizing EBP and a positive movement toward sustainable cultures of college-wide integration of EBP. Primary sources for information-seeking included professional journals, reference textbooks, and healthcare databases, and librarians were rarely consulted. Availability of databases and personal expectations for seeking new evidence were facilitators, and barriers for searching for new information included lack of time to search and not understanding the organization of electronic databases. Most were aware of EBP but not information literacy competencies, and participants unanimously reported information literacy was an EBP prerequisite and faculty were responsible for teaching both competencies. Though not statistically significant, educators younger than fifty years and teaching in graduate and doctorate programs had higher mean scores on the EBPB-E Scale. Statistical significance was found for movement toward a sustainable culture of EBP by participants teaching in graduate and doctorate programs (p= 0.028) on the OCRSIEP-E Scale.
Interview transcripts evolved into three themes: need to update educators to teach information literacy and EBP competencies, organizational constraints for teaching competencies, and commitment for lifelong learning in nursing. Recommendations were to update educators through faculty development and orientation programs about both competencies and consistent integration of competencies in all nursing programs. The significance of the study validated the importance for nursing educators to be knowledgeable and prepared to teach essential nursing competencies expected of nursing graduates.