Original Research

The quality of doctoral nursing education in South Africa

Siedine K. Coetzee, Hester C. Klopper, Mi J. Kim
Curationis | Vol 38, No 1 | a1441 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/curationis.v38i1.1441 | © 2015 Siedine K. Coetzee, Hester C. Klopper, Mi J. Kim | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 08 August 2014 | Published: 09 July 2015

About the author(s)

Siedine K. Coetzee, School of Nursing Science, North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus, South Africa
Hester C. Klopper, School of Nursing Science, North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus, South Africa
Mi J. Kim, College of Nursing, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, United States


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Abstract

Background: The number of doctoral programmes in nursing has multiplied rapidly throughout the world. This has led to widespread concern about nursing doctoral education, specifically with regard to the quality of curricula and faculty, as well as to the availability of appropriate institutional resources. In South Africa, no study of these issues has been conducted at a national level.

Objective: To explore and describe the quality of nursing doctoral education in South Africa from the perspectives of deans, faculty, doctoral graduates and students.

Method: A cross-sectional survey design was used. All deans (N = 15; n = 12), faculty (N = 50; n = 26), doctoral graduates (N = 43; n = 26) and students (N = 106; n = 63) at South African nursing schools that offer a nursing doctoral programme (N = 16; n = 15) were invited to participate. Data were collected by means of structured email-mediated Quality of Nursing Doctoral Education surveys.

Results: Overall, the graduate participants scored their programme quality most positively of all the groups and faculty scored it most negatively. All of the groups rated the quality of their doctoral programmes as good, but certain problems related to the quality of resources, students and faculty were identified.

Conclusion: These evaluations, by the people directly involved in the programmes, demonstrated significant differences amongst the groups and thus provide valuable baseline data for building strategies to improve the quality of doctoral nursing education in South Africa.


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