Undergraduate nursing students challenge misconceptions towards men in nursing: A mixed-method study
Journal of Advanced Nursing
Aims: To examine misconceptions towards men in nursing from the perspective of undergraduate nursing students. Specifically, this study sought to explore contributing factors of misconceptions and attributions of the success of men in nursing. Design: A convergent parallel mixed-method study. Methods: A national survey was conducted (July–September 2021). The quantitative data included demographics and responses to the Gender Misconceptions of Men in Nursing (GEMINI) scale. The qualitative data included responses to a provocative statement related to characteristics of men and their career in nursing. The GRAMMS guideline was used in reporting. Results: Undergraduate nursing students (n = 1245) from 16 Australian schools of nursing responded to the survey. Quantitative analysis demonstrated that most students (96%) did not have misconceptions about men in nursing. Those who did were more likely to be men, born overseas, not in health-related employment and did not have nursing as their first choice. Four broad overarching main themes were generated in response to the statement that suggested men do not have the right attributes for nursing: (1) ‘This is a very misandristic viewpoint’; (2) ‘Compassion and intelligence are distributed in men and women equally’; (3) ‘Men bring a different quality to nursing’ (4) ‘Anyone can be whatever they want to be’. Conclusion: Overall, nursing students did not have misconceptions about men in nursing, despite experiencing ongoing social stigma regarding archaic gender norms. The findings from this study indicate that the next-generation nurses were championing to challenge the gender stereotype and support the needs of a gender diverse society. Impact: Attitudes and misconceptions that elicit gender inequalities must be addressed with comprehensive strategies and de-gendered language and imagery within the profession, schools, workplaces and the media. Shifting culture and attitudes towards inclusion, values the diversity in the workforce and supports healthy workplace environments. Patient or Public Contribution: No patient or public contribution.
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