Dissertation Information for Keith Wilson Cogdill
- Keith Wilson Cogdill
- (Alias) Keith W. Cogdill
- Library and Information Science
- University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (USA) (1998)
- Barbara Marie Wildemuth
- Paul Solomon
- Charles Philip Friedman
- Randolph Fritz Raymond Rasch
- Stephen Michael Downs
- Claudia J. Gollop
MPACT Status: Fully Complete
Title: The information needs and information seeking of nurse practitioners
Abstract: This dissertation reports an investigation of nurse practitioners' (NPs') information needs and information seeking. Prior research of information needs and information seeking among health professionals has focused primarily on physicians' experiences of needing and seeking information as a consequence of encounters with patients. Results of these studies have provided an improved understanding of the types of needs that arise in the minds of physicians as well as the sources of information consulted in efforts to resolve these needs. This investigation initiates a similar vein of research in the population of NPs, health professionals who are responsible for providing an increasing proportion of primary care.
To address research questions pertaining to NPs' information needs and information seeking, this investigation entailed two phases of data collection. The initial phase of data collection was the administration of a questionnaire to three hundred NPs who were asked to report their experiences of needing information as a result of patient encounters as well as their experiences of seeking information. The second phase of data collection entailed a series of interviews with twenty NPs immediately following their encounters with patients to collect data on instances of information needs and information seeking.
Results of this study indicate that NPs most frequently need information related to drug therapy and diagnosis, in that order. NPs with a master's degree were found to experience information needs more frequently than their colleagues who had not received a master's degree. The information resources NPs use most frequently are consultations with colleagues, drug reference manuals and textbooks and protocol manuals. NPs are more likely to pursue needs related to drug therapy with a print resource and needs related to diagnosis with a colleague. The urgency of a need was found to be a significant positive predictor of information seeking. The generalizability of information related to a need, however, was a significant negative predictor of information seeking.
The implications of this research are relevant to practicing NPs, NP educators and health sciences information professionals. Results of this research underscore the importance of access to information resources in the clinical setting as well as the need for the development of educational programs that promote NPs' and NP students' ability to seek information effectively in the context of evidence-based practice.