Ask the expert: How important is it for nurses to do research?

Staff Development Weekly: Insight on Evidence-Based Practice in Education, December 4, 2009

This week, Marquetta Flaugher, ARNP-BC, DSN, discusses the importance of research for nurses and how to motivate them to undertake the challenge.

Q: Is it important to have our nurses do research? If it is something we think about trying to improve on, how do we encourage already busy nurses to do research?

A: A motivated nursing staff is essential to achieving outcomes of excellence. Research helps nurses build networking skills and relationships with their peers and patients. Research holds nurses accountable to high professional standards, which encourages their individual growth. Research promotes shared governance, which focuses on accountability and drives nursing practice. Research can promote job satisfaction by enhancing the care nurses give to their patients while promoting self-development and creating new delivery techniques. Finally, research builds confidence in nurses and fosters an exciting, thriving work environment for nursing staff.

As important as it is, it can be challenging to motivate people, especially when the topic is research.  Motivating nurses to become involved in research will require many different tactics, and nurses will be interested in research for different reasons. Some organizations may tie research into professional development expectations, for example, in a clinical ladder or other career advancement program. Others may reward and celebrate nurses who engage in research, such as recognizing them as ?change champions? and allowing them time off from the unit to participate in committees or team building projects.

Once nurses have begun a research project, it?s important to motivate and encourage them on their nursing research journey. It is important to recognize and motivate nurses doing research so they know their work is appreciated and noticed.

Have a question for our experts? E-mail your queries to Editorial Assistant Casey Ramsdell at See your name in print and find answers to your questions.

Most Popular