Honors Theses and Capstones

Date of Award

Spring 2013

Project Type

Senior Honors Thesis

College or School




Program or Major


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

First Advisor

Gene Harkless


Advanced practice registered nurses are nurses educated with a master’s degree who practice autonomously as well collaboratively with other healthcare professionals to diagnose, treat, and manage patients’ healthcare problems. Undergraduate nursing students often misunderstand the role and responsibilities of advanced practice nurses. As nursing students are cultured in the art and science of nursing, textbooks play an essential role. Therefore in this study, seven best-selling nursing textbooks were examined for content related to APRNs and physicians. Selections from all seven textbooks were collected and analyzed to determine the references to physicians, APRNs, and healthcare providers. APRN selections were less prevalent than physician or healthcare provider selections in all seven textbooks. In addition, content referring to APRNs was inconsistent with the scope and standards of APRN practice. Based on these findings, APRN representation in undergrad nursing textbooks needs to be reexamined and edited to include more references to APRNs consistent with their scope and standards of practice.

Included in

Nursing Commons