The effects of a reminiscence education program on BSN students' cultural self-efficacy in caring for elders

Date of Completion

January 2003


Gerontology|Health Sciences, Nursing




The United States is undergoing a dramatic demographic shift in its elderly population. The projected rise in the elderly population along with increased healthcare needs generates a demand for nurses prepared to care for older adults. At the same time that the population ages, there is a shift occurring in the racial and ethnic composition of the general population and it is becoming more culturally and racially diverse. (Administration on Aging, 1999). The challenge for nursing is how to deliver culturally competent care to an increasing elderly population. ^ The purpose of this study was to test the effects of a reminiscence education program on BSN students' cultural self-efficacy in caring for elders. Bandura's Social Cognitive Theory of Self-Efficacy provided the conceptual framework. An interrupted time series design with a nonequivalent no-treatment control group was used with 64 nursing students recruited from the University of Connecticut, Class of 2002. The Eldercare Cultural Self-Efficacy Scale was the outcome measure. Data were collected two times pre and two times post intervention. The experimental intervention consisted of a one-hour reminscence education program and a 13 week time period in which the experimental group implemented reminscence with elders during their community health practicum. ^ Repeated Measures Analysis of Variance (RM-ANOVA) results were significant between groups at the p < .05 level F(1, 62) = 5.34, p = .024. A small effect size was calculated at 08. Results supported the hypothesis that a reminiscence education program developed according to an appropriate conceptual framework can have a statistically significant and positive effect on nursing students' perceptions of eldercare cultural self-efficacy. This hypothesis is further supported with contextual data that provided insight into the students' perceptions of the reminiscence education program. Three themes emerged: Making a Connection, Seeing the World Through their Eyes, and Benefits of Reminiscence for Elders and Students. ^ Further research that examines the effects of a reminiscence education program on BSN students is warranted. It will be important to obtain a larger more diverse sample, assess levels of faculty eldercare cultural self-efficacy, and provide students with exposure to more diverse patient experiences. ^