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Análise Psicológica

Print version ISSN 0870-8231


LOPES, Manuel José  and  LOURENCO, Orlando. Concepções de enfermagem e desenvolvimento sócio-moral: Alguns dados e implicações. Aná. Psicológica [online]. 1998, vol.16, n.4, pp.655-665. ISSN 0870-8231.

This article is based (a) on Newman´s (1992) characterization of nursing conceptions in terms of categorization, integration and transformation; (b) on the resemblance between these conceptions and Condon´s (1986) caring levels; and on the parallelism between these caring levels and Kohlberg´s (1984) levels of moral reasoning. The main goals of this paper are (a) to analyze nurses´ orientations (i.e., categorization, integration, and transformation) concerning their ideas about «nursing» and «a good nurse»; (b) to examine such orientations as a function of certain demographic variables, such as age, years of professional practice, and academic background; (c) to relate such orientations to Kohlberg´s level of moral reasoning; and (d) to grasp the conception of «nursing» and «a good nurse» of those identified by their peers as good nurses or professionals. The sample consisted of several nurses with at least five years of professional practice, andworking at the hospitals of Beja, Évora and Portalegre (Alentejo). To collect data, we used a questionnaire developed for this study (i.e., Questionnaire on Nurses´ Ideas about the Concepts of «Nursing» and a «Good Nurse»), Rest´s (1986a) Defining Issues Test, and semi-structured interviews. The results show that (a) nurses tend to endorse the statements included inthe integration paradigm; (b) the option for the categorization paradigm tends to increase with age and decrease with academic background; (c) the use of both a concrete and an idealized language; and (d) a positive correlation between moral development and the option for the transformation paradigm, but a negative correlation between the option for the categorization paradigm and level of moral reasoning. The paper ends by suggesting some modifications in the academic training of nurses.

Keywords : Nursing; caring; moral development.

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