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From The CriticsReviewer: Mary Ellen Wurzbach, RN, MSN, PhD (University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh)
Description: This is the third edition of a professional concepts textbook, previously published in 1997. Each chapter contains learning objectives, a summary of key points, critical thinking questions, Web resources, and a list of current references.
Purpose: According to the author, the intent is to help students to understand what it means to be a professional; to appreciate the history of nursing; to understand and prize nursing's values, standards, and ethics; to recognize and deal effectively with the social and economic factors that influence how the profession is practiced; and to appreciate the need to be lifelong learners. These are very ambitious and worthy objectives. The author may not totally meet these objectives, but with this book she does provide motivation to further examine each of the covered topics.
Audience: According to the author, this text should be used in BSN completion programs, generic undergraduate curricula, and as a resource for practicing nurses and graduate students. Because the content related to each topic is abbreviated, I believe it could best be used to provide an overview of professional nursing for undergraduates or those nurses wanting a synopsis of the professional issues facing nursing.
Features: Current and historical nursing concepts and professional challenges are described. The chapters in which the history of nursing and nursing theory are detailed are particularly well done. The author innovatively provides lists of Web resources and inserts of nursing research, interviews with nurse leaders, and summaries of the content. This edition has been updated for the visual learner. There is a succinct overview of each topic, but few of the topics are addressed in detail, a shortcoming inherent to some professional concepts texts. For this reason, the book could best be used by novice nurses or those wanting a concise synopsis of the current status of nursing.
Assessment: This text is an overview of numerous professional issues in nursing appropriate for the undergraduate. Several of the chapters are very well done, but the brevity of each topic leaves the reader wanting to know more. This is both a positive aspect and a drawback of the book. Readers may be motivated to delve deeper into the described topics, a very positive outcome.