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Self-reported competence in female and male nursing students in the light of theories of hegemonic masculinity and femininity
University of Gävle, Faculty of Health and Occupational Studies, Department of Caring Science, Caring Science. Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences, Uppsala University.
2019 (English)In: Journal of Advanced Nursing, ISSN 0309-2402, E-ISSN 1365-2648Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND: In most parts of the world, nursing historically has been considered an occupation for women. Gender stereotypes are associated with the nursing profession.

AIM: The aim was to describe and compare the self-reported competence in female and male nursing students. The students were also compared according to their different background college educations. The theoretical framework of hegemonic masculinity and femininity was used.

DESIGN: A cross-sectional design with a questionnaire was used at two points in time, 2012 and 2017.

METHODS: Nursing students completed a questionnaire on graduation from a three-year university nursing program from 12 universities/university colleges in Sweden. In total, 1,810 students were participating, 1577 female and 227 male students. The Nurse Professional Competence scale was used for data collection.

RESULTS: There were statistical significant differences in the self-reported competence between female and male students (t-tests and ANOVAs). These differences are in agreement with the patterns of hegemonic masculinity and femininity. Female students estimated their competence in giving value-based nursing care as higher than male did. Male students estimated their competence in development and leadership higher than female did.

CONCLUSION: The pattern of hegemonic masculinity and femininity could be identified. This indicates a difference in power between female and male students.

IMPACT: The study addresses the self-reported competence of female and male nursing students. The results indicated that male students possibly looked on themselves as superior to the female students. In order to change the image of nursing as a woman's work, the self-images should be discussed in nursing education as well as in college education. Women interested in development, research and leadership and men interested in nursing care and administration must feel that nursing is a suitable profession for them. The stereotypical image of nursing as a women's work is a barrier to nurses' professional development.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
John Wiley & Sons, 2019.
Keywords [en]
gender imbalance, hegemonic femininity, hegemonic masculinity, nursing education, nursing students, self-reported competence
National Category
Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-30784DOI: 10.1111/jan.14220ISI: 000495122600001PubMedID: 31588580Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85074858864OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-30784DiVA, id: diva2:1360498
Note

Funding: This study was mainly supported by research allocations from some of the universities and university colleges at which the data collection took place. Dalarna University, Karlstad University, Karolinska Institute, Sophiahemmet University, University of Gavle, University of Uppsala

Available from: 2019-10-14 Created: 2019-10-14 Last updated: 2019-11-27Bibliographically approved

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Carlsson, Marianne

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