Factors influencing the choice of nursing studies

Sabiniana San Rafael-Gutiérrez, Antonia Arreciado-Marañón, Enriqueta Bernaus-Poch, Olga Vers-Prat

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To explore the factors that influenced first year students in their choice of nursing studies. Method: Qualitative, descriptive and exploratory study with a phenomenological focus carried out in 2009 in the Vall d'Hebron University Nursing School (EUIVH). Semi-structured, individual, guided in-depth interviews were used. The study population was made up of students registered for the first year of the course. Results: The factors influencing the decision to take a degree in nursing are numerous, with no single factor appearing as dominant. However, aspects such as personal contacts in the healthcare world, the duration of the course and expectations in the employment market are those considered as motivators for the choice. Contact with the theoretical content of the course positively changed students' perceptions with respect to the professional role and to increase loyalty among those who did not put nursing in first place. Conclusions: Nursing is one of the most solicited university degrees. The absence of a clear determining factor in choosing it, as well as the complexity of the caring profession, and the possible use of this degree as a way in to other preferred courses make continuity in professional practice difficult. The question arises as to whether interventions to minimise the lack of professionals in the field should be aimed at those factors that are positive for choosing these courses, or at those that influence the later abandonment of the profession. © 2009 Elsevier España, S.L.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)236-242
JournalEnfermeria Clinica
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2010


  • Career choice
  • Nursing
  • Professional role
  • Qualitative research
  • Students


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