BACKGROUND: Major nursing organizations, federal agencies, and researchers are recommending that all nurses be educated to at least the baccalaureate level. METHODS: This article reports the results of a qualitative study of the experiences of students enrolled in a direct associate’s degree to baccalaureate degree nursing program. Based on multiple small group interviews conducted during an 18-month period, a multistep interpretive analytic process was used that ultimately described themes within a holistic view of the phenomenon. FINDINGS: The results showed an overarching theme of transformative change over time, centered within the “place” of the university. CONCLUSION: The study suggested that there are differences beyond additional coursework that describe a transformative process in associate’s degree to baccalaureate degree education. An atmosphere, or “space created,” for reflection on learning is significant to consider in the development of education programs.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/susan_mcniesh/2/