Improving the cultural competence of nursing students: Results of integrating cultural content in the curriculum and an international immersion experience

Rosalie A. Caffrey, Wendy Neander, Donna Markle, Barbara Stewart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

71 Scopus citations


The purposes of this study were to evaluate the effect of integrating cultural content (ICC) in an undergraduate nursing curriculum on students' self-perceived cultural competence, and to determine whether a 5-week clinical immersion in international nursing (ICC Plus) had any additional effect on students' self-perceived cultural competence. Cultural competence was measured using a 28-item scale regarding students' self-perceived knowledge, self-awareness, and comfort with skills of cultural competence. Pretest scores from admission into the program were matched with posttest scores obtained just prior to graduation for 32 students, 7 of whom also participated in a 5-week immersion experience in Guatemala. Results, expressed in effect sizes, showed small to moderate gains for the 25 students in the ICC group, and very large gains for the 7 students in the ICC Plus group, related to perceived cultural competence. These results are consistent with the two-phase (cognitive and affective) development of cultural competence proposed by Wells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)234-240
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Nursing Education
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2005


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Education

Cite this