Educators’ perceptions of their experiences of transnational education in nursing: A grounded theory study

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The study aim was to explore educators’ perceptions of their experiences of participating in transnational education in nursing.

In an increasingly globalised world, involvement with the delivery of transnational education has become commonplace across the international higher education sector. In recent years, transnational education within the academic discipline of nursing has developed at pace, evolving in response to a global need to invest in nurse education, address nursing shortages and strengthen nursing leadership. However, despite acknowledgement that transnational education is a complex activity that needs to be more fully understood, research specifically exploring transnational education in nursing is scarce, as previous studies predominantly focus on other academic disciplines. The study addresses this knowledge gap, advancing understanding of transnational education within the context of nursing.

The study was positioned within the interpretivist paradigm and underpinned by a constructivist grounded theory methodological design, acknowledging the prior knowledge and experience of the research team in relation to phenomenon under investigation.

Ethical approval was obtained before the study commenced, ensuring adherence to key ethical principles. The study was conducted during May to August 2020, in a university in the North of England that provides undergraduate and postgraduate nurse education within the United Kingdom and transnational context. Participants were recruited via e mail and invited to complete a brief questionnaire, informing a preliminary theoretical sampling strategy. Ten educators with experience of transnational education across a diverse range of international locations participated in individual, semi-structured, online interviews that were recorded and transcribed verbatim. Data were analysed using initial and focused coding, constant comparison, theoretical memos and diagrams.

The findings uncovered three overarching data categories, each of which were crucial to supporting effective transnational education in nursing. Prepare- involved developing an understanding of the context of healthcare and education, being supported and collaborating with transnational partners. Perform- involved recognising language and cultural influences, adapting to the environment and implementing responsive educational pedagogies. Progress- involved recognition of personal development at individual level and valuing the benefits at organisational level.

Although transnational education in nursing can be challenging and complex, it can offer worthwhile advantages for all stakeholders. However, effective transnational education in nursing is dependent on strategies which prepare educators appropriately and enable them to perform effectively, thereby promoting successful outcomes at individual, organisational and transnational partner level and facilitating advancement in future potential collaborative activity.
Original languageEnglish
Article number103649
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalNurse Education in Practice
Early online date29 Apr 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2023

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