Nurses' Beliefs About and Use of Evidence-Based Practice

Date of Completion

January 2012


Health Sciences, Nursing




The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between staff registered nurses' (RNs) level on the clinical ladder and their beliefs about and the use of evidence based practice (EBP). A descriptive cross sectional design study used an anonymous web-based survey consisting of the EBP Beliefs Scale and the EBP Implementation Scale (Melnyk, Fineout-Overholt, & Mays, 2008). Three hundred twenty six staff RNs from a large academic medical center in the northeast agreed to participate in the survey with 288 respondents answering every question. ^ The data were analyzed using Pearson's Product Correlations and one way analysis of variance. No statistically significant relationship was found between clinical ladder level and EBP Belief. However, there was a statistically significant relationship between EBP Belief and both higher education levels (F=2.829, p=.025) and with age (r= -.120, p=.044) indicating belief scores were higher in younger nurses. The relationships between, EBP Implementation and clinical ladder as well as certification were statistically significant. EBP Implementation scores increased as a RNs level on the clinical ladder increased (F=5.529, p= .000) and as higher education level was achieved (F= 15.100, p=.000). The results of this study will be used to guide the design and implementation of a supportive organizational infrastructure for EBP in an effort to address the gap between the moderately strong belief in EBP among the direct care RNs and the low use of EBP. ^