Featured: Nursology.net: A New Resource

Nursology.net: A New Resource for Nurse Authors and Editors

Peggy L. Chinn

Nurse Author & Editor, 2019, 29(3), 3

On July 5, 2019  the featured Nurse Author & Editor article titled The Importance of Nursing in Nursing Publications (Oermann, Chinn, Carter-Templeton, & Nicoll, 2019) made specific recommendations for authors to ground their writing in a nursing perspective, meaning that the work reflects a holistic approach, inclusion of culture and environment, a goal of health and well-being, and specific ties to contributions that nurses bring to healthcare. The “nursing perspective” that we allude to in this article is not a singular approach—our discipline has a diverse, rich and significant body of knowledge expressed in nursing’s theoretic and philosophic literature that now spans over a century. But tragically, many nurses are not aware of the vastness of this literature, and our educational programs have increasingly neglected to ground curricula at all levels in the theoretical and philosophic ideas that have given nursing its unique identity.

Now there is a resource to help nurses everywhere “correct course” in the direction of the perspectives that give nursing its foundational identity. Almost a year ago, a small group of nurse authors and leaders established a new website: Nursology.net, to provide a central resource where nurses in all walks of practice can begin to address this vacuum. Those of us who established the site were motivated by the fact that many nursing programs have eliminated courses that address the theories and history of the profession, leaving limited opportunities for nurses to understand the roots from which the discipline has evolved. In addition, when someone wants or needs to find out about something related to nursing ideas and its theories and philosophies, finding accurate and reliable information is a challenge—often people do not even know where to start.

The Nursology.net site was created to address these challenges.  The stated mission of the site is as follows:

  • Nursology is a distinct discipline that is vital to the health and well-being of people worldwide, our families, communities, and nations.
  • Nursology is multi-dimensional, bringing together a variety of theoretic and philosophic perspectives, each of which makes a significant contribution to the distinct nature of the discipline as a whole.
  • Nursology is an autonomous discipline based on values and ideals that bring a unique and necessary dimension to healthcare.
  • Nursology intersects with other healthcare disciplines, draws on knowledge from other disciplines, and functions in cooperation and collaboration with other disciplines, but remains distinct and autonomous because of particular perspectives arising from the experience of caring for those who are sick or injured, and from the experience of promoting health and well-being for individuals, families, communities, and the environments in which they reside.

Today the site has developed and grown to be the resource the founders envisioned. It provides a central overview for anyone looking for information about our discipline: educators, authors, practitioners, students and those in the public who are interested in nursing and what we are all about. The site showcases the important work of nurse scholars who have developed nursing theories, models, and philosophies, with links and citations to the original articles, books, and other materials related to their ideas. We have included information about the nurse authors to provide context for their ideas. Finding something that you might be looking for is easy, and there are several ways to access information on the site. For example, if you know the name of a person of interest to you, go to the gallery featuring authors of theories, models.  If you do not know a person’s name but you know the focus of the theory or model you are looking for, go to the gallery featuring theories and models.  Once you get to a particular gallery (there are others besides these two) you can search the gallery based on a keyword to find more information.

The site has grown to include much more than our original “showcase” idea. Exemplars are a major feature on the site. These illustrate ways in which nursing theories are used to guide education, practice, research, policy, and quality improvement.  Each exemplar section features real-life situations in which nurses have created practices based on nursing theory.  For example, in the education section there are descriptions of ways in which entire curricula have been designed, or approaches to teaching and learning based on a specific nursing theoretical framework. In the practice exemplar section, there are descriptions of clinical settings where the practice of nursing is informed by a nursing theoretical framework, one of which is the entire U.S Air Force nursing approach based on Ray’s theory of bureaucratic caring.  In each exemplar section you will equally interesting applications where nursing theory informs the work that nurses are doing.

Another important feature is information about nursing theory and philosophy-related conferences—this year (2019) there were 13—a fact that very few of us knew existed.  These are relatively small gatherings focused on specific nursing theories, the research related to a particular theory or model, and ongoing development of that theoretical perspective. You can find out about conferences held every year since 1968 in the “History” section of the site. There are more coming up, which you can find out about “Future Events.” These are important opportunities for discussion, dialogue, critique, and envisioning ideas that will move our discipline forward.

The weekly blog posts are what make this site come alive and relevant for anyone interested in nursing ideas. You can follow the blog to get an email notice of each of the blog posts on the site; the topics cover a wide range of subjects that make the world of nursing ideas relevant and interesting. Blog posts are not simply “cheering sections”—they are substantive, thoughtful and often challenging. The site now has several “collections,” that is, posts that address common themes including:

  • Critical Commentary —featuring posts that challenge the status quo and that highlight important issues related to the development of the discipline.
  • Guardians of the Discipline —featuring nurse leaders who did not produce nursing theory, but have safe-guarded nursing as a distinct discipline and led the way for nursing ideas to flourish.
  • Notable Works —a series that will feature works on issues and challenges that influence the development of nursing ideas.
  • Student Perspectives —bringing together blog posts contributed by students, who are the future thought leaders of our discipline.

Which leads me to the most important feature of the site that Nurse Author & Editor readers need to know: the site is designed for contributions from all who are willing and interested to contribute. Each and every section has a special form for contributors.  Contributing to Nursology.net is similar to writing for a journal, in that the content of your work needs to be congruent with the purposes and mission of the site, and contributions are reviewed by management team members to make sure that the content is consistent with the site’s mission, and that is accurate and credible. Beyond that, writing for nursology.net is quite different from writing a journal article. For most sections, such as theories, models, or exemplars, we ask for summary information about your work, accurate citations and links where people can find details, a bit of context, your own brief biography, and visual media including figures, photos, and even videos.

For the Nursology.net blog, you can be even more creative—this is where your own ideas and your own voice can shine! The best way to get a sense of the variation in both content and style is to read through several of the posts from the past few months. In particular, see the blog post from January this year, titled “You can do it — contribute to the Nursology.net blog!” In this post I explain why blogging has become an important form of publication, called short-form digital publishing, reaching audiences far beyond those who only read professional journals.

When you send us your contribution for a blog post or for any section of the site, it will be reviewed by members of the management team. The only reason for not using material that you send is just not suitable for the site, although at this time, we have yet to “reject” anything. The management team will work to prepare your contribution for posting. We provide suggestions for filling in pertinent details, ask for clarification if something that is not clear, and the most fun part—help gather photos and figures to improve the appeal of your content.

Those of us involved in the ongoing development of Nursology.net know that the site has already become a valuable resource. We track statistics—the table below shows views by the top three countries in 30 day intervals. The “high” number of views in April reflects the possible influence of the nursing theory conference held at Case Western Reserve University on March 21-22, 2019.

Table: Views by country for 30 days preceding monthly Nursology.net management team meetings.

4/11/2019 5/11/2019 6/16/2019 7/11/2019
United States 4,186 2,998 3,031 3,209
Canada 389 333 483 324
3rd/4th place Peru – 83 Japan – 161 Japan -142 Philippines -201

Japan – 176

We invite you to visit the site regularly, use it to stay informed about how nursing ideas are growing and developing, and to expand your view of the landscape that we know as nursing knowledge. Follow the blog to stay tuned in to ideas that challenge, inspire, critique, and celebrate nursing as a discipline. And most important, contribute to the site—if only to comment on a blog post or to send us your feedback. We look forward to hearing from you!

Reference

  1. Oermann, M. H., Chinn, P. L., Carter-Templeton, H., & Nicoll, L. H. (2019). The Importance of Nursing in Nursing Publications. Nurse Author & Editor, 29(3), 1. Retrieved from http://naepub.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/2019-29-3-1-Oermann-et-al.pdf

About the Author

Peggy L. Chinn, RN, PhD, DSc(Hon), FAAN is Editor-in-Chief of Advances in Nursing Science, author of a few books, and manager or co-manager of several websites/blogs, including INANE. She is co-author of The Editor’s Handbook, 3rd ed., published in July, 2019. She is an Author-in-Residence for Nurse Author & Editor. You can reach Peggy directly at: peggychinn@gmail.com

2019 29 3 3 Chinn

Copyright 2019: The Author. May not be reproduced without permission.
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