What Is Nursing Theory?
One nursing theory definition is that it’s a set of frameworks and principles that guides the field of nursing and nursing practice. Based on evidence and research, nursing theory helps provide a foundation for sound decision-making in nursing.
As a report from the Nordic College of Caring Science points out, nursing theory is a way to explain what nurses do for patients and why they do it. Nurses use nursing theories to provide optimal patient care.
According to American Nursing History, Florence Nightingale is considered to be the first nursing theorist and is often called “the founder of modern nursing.” The Florence Nightingale nursing theory she is perhaps best known for is her Environmental Theory that is still practiced today. This theory states that effective nursing relies on the patient’s environment to assist them in recovery.
Nursing theories evolve and emerge over time as they’re put into practice and tested. In nursing school, students learn nursing theories so they can provide the most effective, appropriate care to patients.