Week 4: Nursing Theory


The purpose of the graded collaborative discussions is to engage faculty and students in an interactive dialogue to assist the student in organizing, integrating, applying, and critically appraising knowledge regarding advanced nursing practice. Scholarly information obtained from credible sources as well as professional communication are required. Application of information to professional experiences promotes the analysis and use of principles, knowledge, and information learned and related to real-life professional situations. Meaningful dialogue among faculty and students fosters the development of a learning community as ideas, perspectives, and knowledge are shared.

Activity Learning Outcomes 

Through this discussion, the student will demonstrate the ability to:

  • Demonstrate logical and creative thinking in the analysis and application of a theory to nursing practice. (PO 2 and 5) Weeks 2, 6
  • Examine broad theoretical concepts as foundational to advanced nursing practice roles. (PO 1 and 2) Weeks 1, 2, 4
  • Analyze theories from nursing and relevant fields with respect to the components, relationship among the components, and application to advanced nursing practice. (PO 1) Weeks 4, 6

Due Date: Sunday, 11:59pm MT 

A 10% late penalty will be imposed for discussions posted after the deadline on Wednesday, regardless of the number of days late. NOTHING will be accepted after 11:59pm MT on Sunday (i.e. student will receive an automatic 0). Week 8 discussion closes on Saturday at 11:59pm MT.

Total Points Possible:  75


Discussion Criteria

  1. Application of Course Knowledge: The student post contributes unique  perspectives  or insights gleaned from personal  experience  or examples from the healthcare field. The student must accurately and fully  discuss  the topic for the week in  addition  to providing personal or professional  examples. The  student must completely answer the entire initial  question.
  2. Engagement in Meaningful Dialogue: The student responds to a student peer and course faculty to further dialogue.
    1. Peer Response: The student respondssubstantively to at least one topic-related post by  a  student peer. A substantive post  adds content  or insights or asks  a  question that will add to the  learning  experience and/or generate discussion. 
      1. A post of “I agree”  with a repeat of the other student’s post  does  not count as a substantive  post.  A collection of shallow posts does not equal a  substantive post .
      1. The peer response must occur on a separate day from the initial posting.  
      1. The peer response must occur before Sunday, 11:59 p.m. MT.  
    1. Faculty Response: The student responds substantively  to at least  one question by course faculty. The faculty question may be directed to the student, to another student, or to the entire class.
        1. A post of “I agree”  with a  repeat of the faculty’s post  does  not count as a substantive  post.  A collection of shallow posts does not equal a  substantive post .
        1. The faculty response must occur on a separate day from the initial posting.  
  3. Integration of Evidence:The student post provides support from  a  minimum of one scholarly in-text citation with a matching reference and assigned readings or online lessons, per discussion topic per week.
    1. What is a scholarly resource? A scholarly resource is one  that comes  from a professional, peer-reviewed  publication  (e.g., journals and government  reports such as those  from  the FDA or (CDC).
      1. Contains references for sources cited
      1. Written by a professional or  scholar  in the field and indicates credentials of  the author(s)
      1. Is no more than 5 years old for  clinical  or research articles
    1. What is not considered  a  scholarly resource? 
      1. Newspaper articles and layperson literature (e.g., Readers Digest, Healthy Life Magazine, Food, and Fitness)
      1. Information from Wikipedia  or  any wiki
      1. Textbooks
      1. Website homepages
      1. The weekly lesson
      1. Articles in healthcare and nursing-oriented trade magazines, such  as  Nursing Made Incredibly Easy and RNMagazine (Source: What  is a scholarly article.docx; Created 06/09  CK/CL   Revised: 02/17/11,  09/02/11 nlh/clm)
    1. Can the lesson for the week  be  used as a scholarly source ?
      1. Information from the weekly lesson  can  be cited in a posting; however, it is  not  to be the sole source  used  in the post.

Are resources provided from CU acceptable sources (e.g., the readings for the week)?

  • Not as a sole source  within the  post. The textbook and/or assigned  (required)  articles for the week can be used, but  another  outside source must be cited  for full  credit. Textbooks are not  considered scholarly sources  for the purpose of  discussions.
    • Are websites acceptable as  scholarly resources for discussions?
      • Yes, if they are  documents  or  data cited from credible websites. Credible websites usually end in .gov or edu however, some .org sites that belong to professional associations (e.g., American Heart Association, National League for Nursing, American Diabetes Association) are also considered credible websites. Websites ending with .com are not to be used as scholarly resources.
  • Professionalism in Communication: The post presents information in logical, meaningful, and understandable sequence, and is clearly relevant to the discussion topic. Grammar, spelling, and/or punctuation are accurate.
  • Wednesday Participation Requirement: The student provides a  substantive  response to the graded discussion question(s) or topic(s),  posted by  the >course faculty (not  a  response to a peer), by Wednesday,  11:59 p.m. MT  of each week.
  • Total Participation Requirement: The student provides at least three substantive posts (one to the initial question or topic, one to a student  peer,  and one to a faculty question) on two different days during the week.


Application of Course Knowledge:  2027Answers the initial discussion question(s)/topic(s), demonstrating knowledge and understanding of the concepts for the week.  
Engagement in Meaningful Dialogue With Peers and Faculty  2027Responds to a student peer and course faculty furthering the dialogue by providing more information and clarification, adding depth to the conversation
Integration of Evidence2027Assigned readings or online lesson and at least one outside scholarly source are included. The scholarly source is: 1) evidence-based, 2) scholarly in nature, 3) published within the last 5 years
   Total CONTENT Points= [60 pts]
Grammar and Communication810Presents information using clear and concise language in an organized manner
Reference Citation79References have complete information as required by APA  In-text citations included for all references  and references included for all in-text citation
   Total FORMAT Points= [15 pts]
   DISCUSSION TOTAL= 75 points

Preparing the Assignment

Identify your specialty area of NP practice. Select a nursing theory, borrowed theory, or interdisciplinary theory provided in the lesson plan or one of your own findings. Address the following:

  • Origin
  • Meaning and scope
  • Logical adequacy
  • Usefulness and simplicity
  • Generalizability
  • Testability

Finally, provide an example how the theory could be used to improve or evaluate the quality of practice in your specific setting. What rationale can you provide that validates the theory as applicable to the role of the nurse practitioner.

**To see view the grading criteria/rubric, please click on the 3 dots in the box at the end of the solid gray bar above the discussion board title and then Show Rubric.

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