Date of Award

Fall 2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


College of Education


Department of Education

Primary Advisor

Dr. Sarah Yates

Second Advisor

Dr. Janet Deck

Third Advisor

Dr. Susan Kieffer


The health of the nursing workforce is a critical aspect of high-quality health care and community health promotion, but extensive research indicates that too many nurses neglect selfcare and suffer negative health outcomes. While nursing education must provide self-care learning experiences to improve the health of nurses, the value and influence of a learning experience must be interpreted from the learner’s point of view. The purpose of this phenomenological study was to elicit the personal value that RN-to-BSN students ascribed to a self-care learning experience within a holistic nursing course at a public university. The holistic nursing paradigm offers a unique opportunity to study self-care as a core tenet of nursing. Three themes emerged from the data analysis: (a) the value of the nursing process applied to self, (b) the belief that self-care is not selfish, and (c) the belief that a “good nurse” cares for self. This research is valuable for nursing faculty who want to develop self-care curriculum that is valuable and influential from nursing students’ point of view.