Professional Socialization in Nursing

Professional socialization is the process with the help of which individuals learn disposition, gain new knowledge and skills that make them be effective members of a given work environment, in this case, nursing. The individuals acquire behavioral standards and norms that give them a sense of identity and belonging to the particular field. For instance, nurses being the largest sector of health care are the ones who spend the most time with the patient. They play an important role in the process of nurturing the health of patients. Nurses assist patients in gaining psychological stability during the process of recovering. They provide primary care to patients by giving them food, washing them if necessary and monitoring their response to prescribed treatment (Benner, 2009). Besides the medical knowledge, nurses possess such personal traits as being compassionate, sympathetic and kind in order to make patients have a sense of belonging. Many scientific researches have proved that most chronic diseases have a relationship with behaviors and social set ups. Therefore, management of these diseases, especially in long-term acute care hospitals requires intimate monitoring and counseling of patients. I believe that without a proper attitude to patients, nurses’ duty of assisting patients to recover would be in vain. Currently, the health care system tends to be patriarchal. Patriarchy is a social organization where males are considered to be superior to females. Social duties like caring are viewed as being women’s work. This is because caring is considered to be an inferior work as compared to actual treatment that has been male-dominated. There are instances when the patients can only respond to an opposite-sex attendant (Benner, 2009). Patriarchy has also limited the creativity of women in the health sector as they only perform as per the command of physicians, who are mostly men. Change simply means transforming something to make it look different from its original. The process starts with evaluating ones’ environment to determine what needs to be changed. This is followed by creating awareness among the staff. Meanwhile, resistance to these changes is possible, it should be managed. The next step is implementing the change and finally, evaluating the response. One area where change theory can be applied in nursing. The nurses make up the largest part of health care personnel. Nurses provide patient care hence they play an important role in the implementation of the change theory in the health sector. In 2008, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation of the United States came up with some recommendations for the nursing sector to make it better (Burke, 2002). They suggested that nurses’ responsibilities should not be limited to the traditional duty of caring, but should ensure that nurses fully utilize their knowledge and training in the place of work. Secondly, they suggested that nurses were given higher levels of education and training through the better system of education. They also suggested that nurses should be involved in full partnership with other health professionals to join hands in transforming health sector. In relation to that, nurses should have good data collection skills to enable effective research on new diseases. Change theory can also be applied to ensures in that caring is not only women’s responsibility, as it has been a tradition for a long time. Nevertheless, change theory may receive some resistance in the process of trying to transform the nursing profession (Burke, 2002). The main factor is that society considers caring of patients as inferior in the health profession and, as such, should be only done by women.


Benner, P. (2009). Educating Nurses: A call for radical transformation. CA.: John Wiley and Sons.

Burke, W. W. (2002). Organization change: theory and practice. Thousand Oaks, Calif.: Sage Publications.

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