Background: Establishing a strong foundation for the development of clinical reasoning in nursing students is essential to ensure safe and effective patient care. This study explored prelicensure baccalaureate nursing students’ perceptions of their development of clinical reasoning, as well as their perceptions of how it is taught. Method: In this phenomenological study, individual semistructured interviews were conducted to gather data related to participants’ perceptions of their development of clinical reasoning. Data were analyzed using procedural steps delineated by Giorgi. Results: Data analysis revealed three main themes: Instructor Characteristics, Importance of Clinical Reasoning, and Best Place to Learn Clinical Reasoning. Students recognized how clinical reasoning enhances safe and effective clinical practice and indicated the clinical arena was the most beneficial environment in which to learn clinical reasoning. Conclusion: Understanding students’ perceptions of learning benefits nurse educators in planning nursing program curricula to enhance and facilitate the development of clinical reasoning.
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