Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
McCarthy, Bridie; Trace, Anna; O’Donovan, Moira; Brady-Nevin, Caroline; Murphy, Margaret; O'Shea, Maria; O'Regan, Patricia
Nurse Education Today
Nursing and midwifery students' stress and coping during their undergraduate education programmes: An integrative review
Optional Fields
Coping Coping interventions Stress Student midwife Student nurse Undergraduate
Objectives: The aim of this review is to examine the literature related to the sources of stress, coping mechanisms and interventions to support undergraduate nursing and midwifery students to cope with stress during their undergraduate education. Design: Integrative literature review. Data Sources: The databases CINAHL, PubMed and PsycINFO were searched for articles published between 2010 and 2016. Search terms in various combinations were used for example; student nurse, student midwife, undergraduate, stress, coping and interventions. Review Methods: An integrative review based on Whittemore and Knafl's approach was used to conduct the review. Results: The search generated 25 articles that met the inclusion criteria. The key sources of stress emanated from clinical, academic and financial issues but predominantly from the clinical environment. Students used a variety of coping strategies, both adaptive and maladaptive. These appear to be influenced by their past and present circumstances such as, their needs, what was at stake and their options for coping. Interventions for student nurses/midwives to cope with stress were varied and in the early stages of development. Mindfulness showed some promising positive results. Interventions focussed on the individual level excluding the wider social context or organisation level. Conclusions: Stress is pervasive in all aspects of undergraduate nursing and midwifery education. Nursing and midwifery educators need to be aware of this impact and provide appropriate support to students in both the clinical and academic environments. Further research is needed to capture the experience of stress from the students' perspective as well as the barriers and facilitators to supporting students from the preceptors'/mentors' perspectives. Finally, more intervention studies are needed to identify and compare what interventions are effective in supporting students to cope with stress during their undergraduate education.
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