Patricia Jara Concha, Olga Polanco Abello, María Alveal Lagos


The aim of this descriptive exploratory research is to describe the professional role perception the undergraduate nursing students attending University of Concepción (CHILE) have, in their different instructional levels, during academic year, 2000. An intentional sample, 250 students were chosen and grouped as follow; being A: First year, B: Third year, C: Fifth year. A questionnaire made up by the authors, based on previous role trials among professionals, was applied. The information was descriptively analyzed for each group (separately) and a comparative analysis from the groups. Statistical analysis with Chi2 was used for groups B and C.

As for the role image, most of the students perceive the nurse as a teamwork coordinator and only 18% consider the nurse as caregiver. As far as the representation of the role concept that emerges from situations related to professional exercise is concerned, most of the students identify the role as caregivers. In both, statistical analysis using Chi2 turned out to be not significant. In level B and C, the expressive role character is preferentially indicated by the students, being the differences, statistically significant.

The role perception the nursing students have, changes according the level they are attending, with the special consideration upon some key educational factors, such as teacher’s models, nurses models and/or clinical settings.

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