Nicky Davies

603 – Learning the RN role in aged residential care – the impact upon 3rd year nursing students’ attitudes


By 2050 approximately two billion people, worldwide, will be aged 60 plus. A seemingly longstanding negativity that surrounds gerontological nursing as a planned career choice for undergraduates means that fewer graduates actively choose to work with older people.  Research suggests that interest in aged residential care (ARC) as an RN graduate placement is strongly influenced by undergraduate education and clinical placements, which are currently limited. ARC is a less preferred option for RN graduate nurses in their first year of practice.

Currently there is no New Zealand data that explores the attitudes of 3rd year nursing students towards the role of the RNs working in ARC. Implementing a 3rd year clinical placement that focuses on the role of the RN in aged care will allow for investigation of this issue.


This pilot study uses a qualitative approach exploring the experiences of six nursing students, in the 3rd year of their BN programme, during an aged care clinical placement with a focus on the role of the RN. Data was collected via a focus group before and after placement, along with one individual semi-structured interview per participant.  Data collected was then reviewed using thematic analysis.

Ethical approval for this project was obtained from ARA institute.

Key words: Aged residential care, RN role, nursing attributes