Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Nursing


School of Nursing


Faculty of Health and Human Sciences

First Advisor

Andrew Yung


The purpose of this phenomenological study was to describe and interpret the common, shared meanings of the experience of aged care nursing from the perspective of the registered nurse working in a nursing home. There are insufficient registered nurses being attracted into aged care, with resulting difficulties in maintaining regular staffing levels in nursing homes. Previous studies conducted in Australia have predominantly used quantitative research methods to investigate various influences QD the recruitment and retention of aged care nurses. These studies do not take into account the practitioners' perceptions of their experience of aged care nursing. A purposive sample of 15 registered nurses was interviewed and the resulting data were analysed using phenomenology to identify thematic structures of the experience of aged care nursing. The NUD.IST qualitative data analysis software package was used as an analysis tool. Significant statements were coded, patterns and relations between categories were identified and the categories were clustered into conceptual, hierarchical themes. Four major themes emerged as being central to the experience of aged care nursing-Gratification, Rapport, Non-productivity and Conflict. While constraints and obstacles to productivity and personal and political conflict may be seen as the negative aspects of aged care, these experiences were relieved by uplifting events described within the framework of resident care and rapport, and collegial support. The nature of aged care nursing is both complex and ambiguous but nurses have readily identified the interwoven threads of the experience. Findings from this study will increase the depth of understanding of aged care nursing and hence contribute to the development of a nursing home environment which enriches the experience of both nurse and resident.

Included in

Geriatrics Commons