Date of Award


Document Type



Edith Cowan University

Degree Name

Master of Nursing


School of Nursing


Faculty of Health and Human Sciences

First Supervisor

Maxine Serrell

Second Supervisor

Hendrika Maltby

Third Supervisor

Sue Robinson


This descriptive exploratory study evaluated the usefulness of an adapted self-appraisal and goal setting performance instrument. The instrument is developmental in its purpose and is currently used by community health nurses at the Armadale Kelmscott Health Service of the Health Department of Western Australia. The study was conducted in two parts; the first part used a questionnaire to examine the perceptions of a group of community health nurses who use the instrument. The second part of the study which used a structured survey sought to determine how well the instrument's self-appraisal behaviours approximate with the Standards of the Australian Council of Community Nursing Services (1993). The findings demonstrated that the respondents to the questionnaire perceived the instrument to be useful across each of the eight criteria that defined its usefulness. The findings from a structured survey found an acceptable level of congruency between the behaviour items within the instrument and the standards laid down in the Australian Council of Community Nursing Services Standards (1993). Implications for nursing concern enhancement of self-regulation and professional accountability, acceptability for continued use of a performance appraisal system that focuses on potential, and the enabling of appraisal of practice against professional standards.