Reasons for entering and leaving nursing: an Australian regional study

Article


Eley, Diann, Eley, Robert and Rogers-Clark, Cath. 2010. "Reasons for entering and leaving nursing: an Australian regional study." Australian Journal of Advanced Nursing. 28 (1), pp. 6-13.
Article Title

Reasons for entering and leaving nursing: an Australian regional study

ERA Journal ID14058
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsEley, Diann (Author), Eley, Robert (Author) and Rogers-Clark, Cath (Author)
Journal TitleAustralian Journal of Advanced Nursing
Journal Citation28 (1), pp. 6-13
Number of Pages8
Year2010
PublisherAustralian Nursing and Midwifery Federation
Place of PublicationAustralia
ISSN0813-0531
1447-4328
Web Address (URL)https://www.ajan.com.au/archive/ajan_28.1.html
Abstract

Objective. To compare and contrast the reasons that nurses and nursing students provide for entering and leaving nursing.

Design. A quantitative cross-sectional cohort design with online survey.

Setting. Regional public health service district and regional university nursing school.

Subjects. Nurses (n= 272) and nursing students (n=259).

Main outcome measures. Demographics of nurses and nursing students including age, sex and length of time as a nurse, and reasons for entering and leaving the profession.

Results. Among the nurses 88.4% were female and 37% 50 years of age or older. Almost half (45.3%) of the nursing students were 30 years of age or older and 44.1% of all students were working as nursing assistants or enrolled nurses whilst studying. Of these working students 32.5% had been nursing in excess of five years. Self interest, vocation and altruism were identified by both students and nurses as the main reasons for entering nursing. Respondents above and below 30 years of age gave the same reasons for entering nursing. Choice of factors for considering leaving nursing differed between groups and ages. Compared to students, nurses were most likely to cite disillusionment with nursing. Students under 30 years of age indicated pursuit of another career and starting a family to be the major factors while older students offered disillusionment with nursing and health concerns.

Conclusions. Retention strategies may need to differ for age of nurse. However recruitment needs to be informed by the altruistic and vocational reasons why nurses and nursing students are drawn to nursing rather than focussing on perceived generational differences.

Keywordsnursing; nurses; retention; recruitment; career choice; questionnaire; survey
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020520104. Industrial and organisational psychology (incl. human factors)
420599. Nursing not elsewhere classified
441001. Applied sociology, program evaluation and social impact assessment
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Byline AffiliationsUniversity of Queensland
Centre for Rural and Remote Area Health
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Rogers-Clark, Cath, Kyle, Wendy Lee and Wilson, Geoff. 2005. "Gender and health." Rogers-Clark, Cath, McCarthy, Alexandra and Martin-McDonald, Kristine (ed.) Living with illness: psychosocial challenges for nursing . Sydney, Australia. Elsevier. pp. 38-53
Workplace violence: differences in perceptions of nursing work between those exposed and those not exposed: a cross-sector analysis
Hegney, Desley, Tuckett, Anthony, Parker, Deborah and Eley, Robert. 2010. "Workplace violence: differences in perceptions of nursing work between those exposed and those not exposed: a cross-sector analysis ." International Journal of Nursing Practice. 16 (2), pp. 188-202. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1440-172X.2010.01829.x
Access to and support for continuing professional education amongst Queensland nurses: 2004 and 2007
Hegney, Desley, Tuckett, Anthony, Parker, Deborah and Eley, Robert. 2010. "Access to and support for continuing professional education amongst Queensland nurses: 2004 and 2007." Nurse Education Today. 30 (2), pp. 142-149. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nedt.2009.06.015
Music therapy to manage asthma symptoms in young indigenous people in an urban setting
Eley, Robert and Norman, Michelle. 2010. "Music therapy to manage asthma symptoms in young indigenous people in an urban setting." Aboriginal and Islander Health Worker Journal. 34 (3), pp. 20-22.
Career breaks and intentions for retirement by Queensland's nurses - a sign of the times?
Eley, Robert, Parker, Deborah, Tuckett, Anthony and Hegney, Desley. 2010. "Career breaks and intentions for retirement by Queensland's nurses - a sign of the times? " Collegian: The Australian Journal of Nursing Practice, Scholarship and Research. 17 (1), pp. 38-42. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.colegn.2009.10.004
Didgeridoos, songs and boomerangs for asthma management
Eley, Robert, Gorman, Don and Gately, Jane. 2010. "Didgeridoos, songs and boomerangs for asthma management." Health Promotion Journal of Australia. 21 (1), pp. 39-44.
How do rural GPs manage their inactive and overweight patients? A pilot study of rural GPs in Queensland
Eley, Diann and Eley, Robert. 2009. "How do rural GPs manage their inactive and overweight patients? A pilot study of rural GPs in Queensland." Australian Journal of General Practice. 38 (9), pp. 747-748.
Necessity breeds innovation: GPs help prevent an emergency department closure
Partanen, Riitta L., O'Brien, Maxine L. and Eley, Diann S.. 2009. "Necessity breeds innovation: GPs help prevent an emergency department closure." Australian Health Review. 33 (3), pp. 467-471. https://doi.org/10.1071/AH090467
Enhancing the knowledge and skills of advisory and extension agents in mental health issues of farmers
Hossain, Delwar, Gorman, Don and Eley, Robert. 2009. "Enhancing the knowledge and skills of advisory and extension agents in mental health issues of farmers ." Australasian Psychiatry. 17 (1), pp. 116-120. https://doi.org/10.1080/10398560902948365
Enhancing the knowledge and skills of advisory and extension agents in mental health issues of farmers
Hossain, Delwar, Gorman, Don, Eley, Robert and Coutts, Jeff. 2009. Enhancing the knowledge and skills of advisory and extension agents in mental health issues of farmers. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Mental health first aid training for advisory and extension agents working with farmers
Gorman, Don, Hossain, Delwar, Eley, Robert and Coutts, Jeff. 2008. "Mental health first aid training for advisory and extension agents working with farmers." Cross, Wendy (ed.) Mental Health Nursing – A Broad Canvas: The Art of Mental Health Nursing in the Age of Technology and Science (2008). Melbourne, Australia 06 - 10 Oct 2008
Farm advisors' reflections on mental health first aid training
Hossain, Delwar, Gorman, Don, Eley, Robert and Coutts, Jeff. 2009. "Farm advisors' reflections on mental health first aid training." Advances in Mental Health. 8 (1).
Nurses' confidence and experience in using information technology
Eley, Robert, Fallon, Tony, Soar, Jeffrey, Buikstra, Elizabeth and Hegney, Desley. 2008. "Nurses' confidence and experience in using information technology." Australian Journal of Advanced Nursing. 25 (3), pp. 23-35.
Individual resilience in rural people: a Queensland study, Australia
Hegney, D. G., Buikstra, E., Baker, P., Rogers-Clark, C., Pearce, S., Ross, H., King, C. and Watson-Luke, A.. 2007. "Individual resilience in rural people: a Queensland study, Australia." Rural and Remote Health. 7 (4), pp. 1-13.
Perceptions of mental health service delivery among staff and Indigenous consumers: it's still about communication
Eley, Diann, Young, Louise, Hunter, Keith, Baker, Peter, Hunter, Ernest and Hannah, Dominique. 2007. "Perceptions of mental health service delivery among staff and Indigenous consumers: it's still about communication." Australasian Psychiatry. 15 (2), pp. 130-134. https://doi.org/10.1080/10398560601121017
A study of council community directories and their use for information about local health services
Eley, Robert, Hossain, Delwar and Khatri, Yunus. 2007. A study of council community directories and their use for information about local health services. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Evaluation of the role of the breast care nurse at Toowoomba Base Hospital
Eley, Robert, Rogers-Clark, Cath and Knight, Christine. 2007. Evaluation of the role of the breast care nurse at Toowoomba Base Hospital . Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Didgeridoo playing and singing to support asthma management in aboriginal Australians
Eley, Robert and Gorman, Don. 2010. "Didgeridoo playing and singing to support asthma management in aboriginal Australians." Journal of Rural Health. 26 (1), pp. 100-104. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1748-0361.2009.00257.x
Nurses worth listening to
Hegney, Desley, Plank, Ashley, Buikstra, Elizabeth, Parker, Victoria and Eley, Robert. 2005. Nurses worth listening to. Tooowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Nurses and information technology
Hegney, Desley, Buikstra, Elizabeth, Eley, Robert, Fallon, Anthony Bruce, Gilmore, Victoria and Soar, Jeffrey. 2007. Nurses and information technology. Canberra, Australia. Commonwealth of Australia.
Music therapy to manage asthma
Eley, Robert and Gorman, Don. 2008. "Music therapy to manage asthma." Aboriginal and Islander Health Worker Journal. 32 (1), pp. 9-10.
Council community directories as a source of information about local health services in rural Australia
Eley, Rob and Hossain, Delwar. 2010. "Council community directories as a source of information about local health services in rural Australia." Journal of Community Informatics. 6 (2), pp. 1-11.
Barriers to use of information and computer technology by Australia's nurses: a national survey
Eley, Robert, Fallon, Anthony Bruce, Soar, Jeffrey, Buikstra, Elizabeth and Hegney, Desley. 2009. "Barriers to use of information and computer technology by Australia's nurses: a national survey." Journal of Clinical Nursing. 18 (8), pp. 1151-1158. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2702.2008.02336.x
The status of training and education in information and computer technology of Australia's nurses: a national survey
Eley, Robert, Fallon, Tony, Soar, Jeffrey, Buikstra, Elizabeth and Hegney, Desley. 2008. "The status of training and education in information and computer technology of Australia's nurses: a national survey." Journal of Clinical Nursing. 17 (20), pp. 2758-2767. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2702.2008.02285.x
Gender roles and geographic locations as predictors of emotional distress in Australian women
Bramston, Paul, Rogers-Clark, Cathy, Hegney, Desley and Bishop, Janet. 2000. "Gender roles and geographic locations as predictors of emotional distress in Australian women." Australian Journal of Rural Health. 8 (3), pp. 154-160. https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1440-1584.2000.00272.x
Findings from the HEI 'flip' project: application issues
Simpson, Will, Evans, Deborah, Eley, Robert and Stiles, Mark. 2003. "Findings from the HEI 'flip' project: application issues." International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education. 13 (5/6), pp. 471-482. https://doi.org/10.1504/IJCEELL.2003.004005
Informing rural and remote students about careers in health: factors influencing career decisions
Buikstra, Elizabeth, Eley, Robert M. and Hindmarsh, Natalie. 2007. "Informing rural and remote students about careers in health: factors influencing career decisions." Australian Journal of Rural Health. 15 (5), pp. 289-295. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1440-1584.2007.00899.x
Living with breast cancer: the influence of rurality on women's suffering and resilience. A postmodern feminist inquiry
Rogers-Clark, Cath. 2002. "Living with breast cancer: the influence of rurality on women's suffering and resilience. A postmodern feminist inquiry." Australian Journal of Advanced Nursing. 20 (2), pp. 34-39.
Experiences of regional and rural people with cancer being treated with radiotherapy in a metropolitan centre
Martin-McDonald, Kristine, Rogers-Clark, Cath, Hegney, Desley, McCarthy, Alexandra and Pearce, Susanne. 2003. "Experiences of regional and rural people with cancer being treated with radiotherapy in a metropolitan centre." International Journal of Nursing Practice. 9 (3), pp. 176-182. https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1440-172X.2003.00421.x
Why nurses are attracted to rural and remote practice
Hegney, Desley, McCarthy, Alexandra, Rogers-Clark, Cath and Gorman, Don. 2002. "Why nurses are attracted to rural and remote practice." Australian Journal of Rural Health. 10 (3), pp. 178-186.
Why nurses are resigning from rural and remote Queensland health facilities
Hegney, Desley, McCarthy, Alexandra, Rogers-Clark, Cath and Gorman, Don. 2002. "Why nurses are resigning from rural and remote Queensland health facilities." Collegian: The Australian Journal of Nursing Practice, Scholarship and Research. 9 (2), pp. 33-39.
Retaining rural and remote area nurses: the Queensland Australia experience
Hegney, Desley, McCarthy, Alexandra, Rogers-Clark, Cath and Gorman, Don. 2002. "Retaining rural and remote area nurses: the Queensland Australia experience." Journal of Nursing Administration. 32 (3), pp. 128-135.
Mental health nursing standards and practice indicators for Australia: a review of current literature
Neville, Christine, Eley, Diann, Quinn, John, Weir, Jim, Hegney, Desley, Hangan, Catherine and Grasby, David. 2006. Mental health nursing standards and practice indicators for Australia: a review of current literature. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
The ILRI Graduate Fellows Programme: a case study of impact (1978-1997)
Eley, Robert, Ibrahim, Habid, Hambly, Helen, Demeke, Mulat and Smalley, Michael. 2003. "The ILRI Graduate Fellows Programme: a case study of impact (1978-1997)." Education + Training. 45 (3), pp. 162-174. https://doi.org/10.1108/00400910310471028
Rural and remote health research: key issues for health providers in Southern Queensland
Eley, Robert and Baker, Peter. 2007. "Rural and remote health research: key issues for health providers in Southern Queensland." Australian Journal of Rural Health. 15 (6), pp. 368-372.
Desire of industry, products from academia - ships that pass in the night?
Eley, Robert, Williamson, Sarah and Lamb, Fiona. 2002. "Desire of industry, products from academia - ships that pass in the night? " 2002 Americal Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition (ASEE 2002). Montreal, Canada 16 - 19 Jun 2002 Washington, DC.
What problems? No problems! Disabled people studying or working within an engineering-based environment
Hopkins, Christopher and Eley, Robert. 2001. "What problems? No problems! Disabled people studying or working within an engineering-based environment." Cutler, Gavin and Pulko, Susan (ed.) Progress 1. Student Progression and Retention in Engineering (2001). Hull, United Kingdom 18 - 20 Oct 2001 Hull, UK.
Supporting semi-remote web-based learners using a peer-to-peer collaborative tool
Evans, Debbie, Simpson, Will, Low, Ian and Eley, Robert. 2002. "Supporting semi-remote web-based learners using a peer-to-peer collaborative tool." New Pattern of Learning in Higher Education (2002). London 20 - 21 Jun 2002 London, United Kingdom.
An evaluation of bereavement support in Toowoomba
Eley, Robert. 2005. An evaluation of bereavement support in Toowoomba. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Evaluation of the health careers in the Bush Health Careers Workshops 1994 - 2002
Hegney, Desley, Eley, Robert and Buikstra, Elizabeth. 2005. Evaluation of the health careers in the Bush Health Careers Workshops 1994 - 2002. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
An analysis of accommodation needs of adults with an intellectual disability in Toowoomba and surrounding areas
Eley, Diann, Hegney, Desley and Boyes, Joanne. 2006. An analysis of accommodation needs of adults with an intellectual disability in Toowoomba and surrounding areas. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Psychological services in five South-West Queensland communities: supply and demand
Buikstra, E., Fallon, A. B. and Eley, R.. 2007. "Psychological services in five South-West Queensland communities: supply and demand." Rural and Remote Health. 7 (1), pp. 1-11.
Aged care nursing in Queensland - the nurses' view
Eley, Robert, Hegney, Desley, Buikstra, Elizabeth, Fallon, Anthony Bruce, Plank, Ashley and Parker, Victoria. 2007. "Aged care nursing in Queensland - the nurses' view ." Journal of Clinical Nursing. 16 (5), pp. 860-872. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2702.2006.01696.x
Key issues in rural health: perspectives of health service providers in Queensland
Eley, Robert, Fallon, Anthony Bruce, Gorman, Don, Fahey, Paul P., Rogers-Clark, Cath and Hegney, Desley. 2006. Key issues in rural health: perspectives of health service providers in Queensland. Toowoomba, Australia. University of Southern Queensland.
Workplace violence in Queensland, Australia: the results of a comparative study
Hegney, Desley, Eley, Robert, Plank, Ashley, Buikstra, Elizabeth and Parker, Victoria. 2006. "Workplace violence in Queensland, Australia: the results of a comparative study." International Journal of Nursing Practice. 12 (4), pp. 220-231. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1440-172X.2006.00571.x
Tenure, mobility and retention of nurses in Queensland, Australia: 2001 and 2004
Eley, Robert, Hegney, Desley, Buikstra, Elizabeth, Plank, Ashley and Parker, Victoria. 2007. "Tenure, mobility and retention of nurses in Queensland, Australia: 2001 and 2004 ." Journal of Nursing Management. 15 (3), pp. 285-293.
Informing rural and remote high school students about careers in health: the effect of Health Careers Workshops on course selection
Eley, Robert, Hindmarsh, Natalie and Buikstra, Elizabeth. 2007. "Informing rural and remote high school students about careers in health: the effect of Health Careers Workshops on course selection ." Australian Journal of Rural Health. 15 (1), pp. 59-64.
Gender and citizenship potential in adolescent students
Eley, Diann and Kirk, David. 2004. "Gender and citizenship potential in adolescent students." Katsikitis, Mary (ed.) 39th Australian Psychological Society Annual Conference 2004. Sydney, Australia 29 Sep - 03 Oct 2004 Melbourne, Australia.
Tradition and technology: teaching rural medicine using an internet discussion board
Baker, P. G., Eley, D. S. and Lasserre, K. E.. 2005. "Tradition and technology: teaching rural medicine using an internet discussion board." Rural and Remote Health. 5 (4).
Does recruitment lead to retention? Rural Clinical School training experiences and subsequent intern choices
Eley, Diann and Baker, Peter. 2006. "Does recruitment lead to retention? Rural Clinical School training experiences and subsequent intern choices." Rural and Remote Health. 6 (1).
Tools and methodologies for investigating the mental health needs of indigenous patients: it's about communication
Eley, Diann, Hunter, Keith, Young, Louise, Baker, Peter, Hunter, Ernest and Hannah, Dominique. 2006. "Tools and methodologies for investigating the mental health needs of indigenous patients: it's about communication." Australasian Psychiatry. 14 (1), pp. 33-37.
Planning research in rural and remote areas
Baker, P. G., Hegney, D., Rogers-Clark, C., Fahey, P., Gorman, D. and Mitchell, G.. 2004. "Planning research in rural and remote areas." Rural and Remote Health. 4 (266), pp. 1-11.
Patient recruitment for a practice nurse study
Eley, Diann, Hegney, Desley and Patterson, Elizabeth. 2005. "Patient recruitment for a practice nurse study." Australian Journal of General Practice. 34 (11), pp. 991-992.
Attitudes of Australian nurses to information technology in the workplace: A national survey
Eley, Robert, Soar, Jeffrey, Buikstra, Elizabeth, Fallon, Tony and Hegney, Desley. 2009. "Attitudes of Australian nurses to information technology in the workplace: A national survey." CIN: Computers, Informatics, Nursing. 27 (2), pp. 114-121. https://doi.org/10.1097/NCN.0b013e318197557e
Acute pain in surgical patients
Schoenwald, Anthony and Rogers Clark, Cath. 2006. "Acute pain in surgical patients." Contemporary Nurse. 22 (1), pp. 97-108. https://doi.org/10.5172/conu.2006.22.1.97