Nursing Theory

Nursing Theory

Nursing Theory 150 150 Peter

Nursing Theory

For this reflection, submit your answers to the three questions below and include the references as indicated.

The formatting must follow APA guidelines.

Please use the following headings:


A good introduction typically begins with a few general sentences about the topic followed by a purpose. One example of a purpose sentence for this assignment is: The purpose of this paper is to discuss the development, usefulness, and history of nursing theory.

Development & Usefulness

Discuss why it took so long for nursing theory to develop and the usefulness of nursing theory in current practice (two references required)


Describe a brief history of nursing theory and the culture of nursing theory development (one reference required).


A good conclusion summarizes the major points in the paper, no references are used in the conclusion.

The conclusion should consist of two paragraphs.


You may submit this assignment via a file upload submission in the module. Please ensure you review and follow the elements of the assignment and rubric prior to submission.

Sample Paper

Nursing Theory

Nursing theories are a set of organized bodies that define the uniqueness of the nursing discipline by setting a framework to understand the actions and decisions of nurses. Theories are developed based on scientific research and personal perspectives on the profession. These theories have been used as the basis for guiding research, education, and nursing care. This paper explores the development and usefulness of the nursing theory and provides a brief history of the nursing theory.

Development and Usefulness

            Nursing theory development took so long due to system inadequacies, lack of collaboration in the clinical setting, professionalism, routine, and training (Shohani & Zamanzadeh, 2017). In the early days, nurses were considered doers and not thinkers, which challenged the development of theories. Most young professionals joined the profession as an activist, with just one goal of helping and assisting people rather than thinking about the profession’s advancement. Also, nurses were tied to routine and repetitive programs in the profession, which hindered the manifestation of ethical principles (Shohani & Zamanzadeh, 2017). Nursing education did not support the development of nurse theories. Nurses were trained to serve doctors, and thus there was no real sense of nursing as an autonomous profession. Long shifts and exhaustion significantly contributed to the delayed development of nursing theories.

Nursing theories are of significant importance, providing the foundation for nursing practice. They are being used to guide nursing education research and as the basis for nursing intervention. Nursing theories are thus critical in improving the quality of care since they allow nurses to articulate the needs and desires of the patient (Wayne, 2021). In addition, theories prepare nurses to reflect on the questions and assumptions of nursing values, increasing the knowledge base to maintain and preserve the limits and boundaries of the profession.


            Nursing theory first appeared in the 1800s when Florence Nightingale developed her environmental theory in 1860, which defined the need for nurses to utilize a patient’s environment as a tool for envisioning recovery (Wayne, 2021). In the 1950s, nurse scholars had a consensus on the need to validate the profession by producing a scientifically tested body of knowledge. Hildegard Peplau developed the Theory of Interpersonal Relations, emphasizing the need for nurse-patient relationships. This was later followed by Virginia Henderson’s theory of Nursing needs in 1955 (Wayne, 2021). More theorists came in place in the 1960s and 70s who set the foundation for professional advancement.

Nurse theorists had a culture of using reality and the relationship of nursing practice to develop nursing theories. Before the 1970s, the development of nursing theories was based on practice and discipline and reflected on the opposite views of the profession. In the late 1970, the development of nursing theories changed, becoming more viable. Nurse theories were conceptualized into general theories referred to as grand theories, which consisted of high abstract concepts (Hoeck & Delmar, 2018). Middle-range theories became popular in the 1990s and were developed to make grand theories more concrete for nursing interventions.


            Nursing theories have been critical in laying the foundation for the profession’s advancement. There is a significant focus on individualizing care provision and ensuring that all nurse actions and practices are guided by theoretical knowledge. The contribution and commitment of nurse theorists have made it possible for nursing to be seen as a unique profession rather than subordinate to doctors.

The adoption of theories in nursing education, research, and practice has had a significant impact in promoting quality care. Theories have been critical in promoting evidence-based practice and increasing patient satisfaction. Nursing theory has therefore been critical in intensifying knowledge and skills critical in supporting the needs and desires of the patient. Therefore, nursing training and education should prioritize the advancement of students’ competence in using nurse theories in daily clinical practice.



Hoeck, B., & Delmar, C. (2018). Theoretical development in the context of nursing—The hidden epistemology of nursing theory. Nursing Philosophy19(1), e12196.

Shohani, M., & Zamanzadeh, V. (2017). Nurses’ attitude towards professionalization and factors influencing it. Journal of caring sciences6(4), 345.

Wayne, G. (2021, March 5). Nursing theories and theorists: An ultimate guide for nurses. Nurseslabs.