Trench work: Scaffolding a metaphorical bridge to foster the advancement of caring sciences

Colleen Maykut, Meredith Porter


Caring, as knowledge, must be foundational within a nursing curriculum; while caring, as action, must be consistently nurtured in caring relationships to foster healing environments. If caring is seen as a way of being that emanates from a nurse’s expression of their humanity then knowledge of caring sciences is vital in nursing education to ensure the development of an ethical, epistemological, and ontological perspective for both educators and students. One approach to ensuring the actualization of a caring science curriculum is through authentic dialogue, thereby, embodying the prerequisites necessary for a nursing student to espouse a caring practice is imperative. A novel approach to curriculum development evolved following a candid discussion between nursing students and faculty with respect to a core course offered in an undergraduate nursing program. This discussion inspired the co-development of case studies grounded in the caring sciences exploring the concepts of moral dilemmas, spirituality, and suffering. As nursing faculty, we have the opportunity and responsibility to create and role-model caring relationships with our students to enhance their future nursing practice and to continue to nurture our own professional development; influencing knowing, doing, and being as a caring practitioner. The authors, an enrolled undergraduate nursing student (during the research study) and a tenured faculty member, will reflect on their journey of scaffolding a metaphorical bridge (initiating, developing, and sustaining an innovative academic collaboration) grounded in caring sciences to enhance undergraduate nursing education.

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Clinical Nursing Studies
ISSN 2324-7940(Print)   ISSN 2324-7959(Online)

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