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Knowing  in  Nursing  Practice

People in a particular practice become professionals because of the knowledge that they possess and strive to acquire. Nurses like other professionals have some expertise and a continued need to increase it.

Patterns of knowing in nursing practice

These are the four patterns for pursuing knowing in nursing practice.

Personal knowing

Personal knowing refers to the knowledge that professionals have form watching and experience. This type of information gets to the professionals through processes of observation, self, actualization, and reflection. It is through self-knowledge that they establish authentic therapeutic relationships that propel people to wholeness as well as integrity. Personal knowing also refers to the knowledge that a person knew before they began to study nursing.

Personal knowing reflects in the engagement between a nurse and patients. It demands a caregiver to have intimate knowledge to approach patients as a person to form an authentic relationship. It is from this personal relationship that the nurses will apply scientific knowledge that helps in practice.

Empirical knowing

Empirical knowing is factual knowledge from objective facts and research with alignment to quantitative explanations. The knowledge has some systematic organization into general theories and laws. Evidence-based practice is one of the ways to employ this knowledge.

The reference for this way of knowing is the science of nursing. The empirical foundations of nursing begin from a systematic inquiry whether it is observational, naturalistic and experimental. Nurses know about the human response through some controlled studies although science nursing started embracing ideals of evidence-based practice with an increase in emphasis on the empirical foundations through the 20th century.

Nurses demonstrate the professional commitment to the expansion of practical knowledge by using or generating research findings for guidance and establishment of best practices. This process requires a critical examination, understanding, and knowledge of the implications of the conclusions reported or data before making clinical decisions. The result is the evidence-based practice.

Aesthetic knowing

Aesthetics as a means of knowing in nursing practice is perception, part action, and empathy. Use of aesthetics as art in nursing practice involves paying attention to health concern to these aspects of a patient:

Health concerns and behaviors Scattered relevant intangibles and details

A nurse integrates them into a holistic understanding of a person and his or her needs. Aesthetic knowing provides a creative spark that leads nurses to know how to do something and ways of accomplishing it which is to define the way to approach a patient and address the therapeutic needs.

This type of knowing takes other kinds aside and creates a new understanding of the phenomena. It brings the excitement of uncovering something new to provide an opportunity for a new perspective like an artist who creates something fresh. It is essential to consider the process of getting to the discovery.

Ethical knowledge

Ethical knowing is the focus on matters of obligation in practice and the way of doing certain things. Ethics lie at the foundation of action. They require judgment on the things to do and those to avoid. It arises because of the complex consequence of learning, engagement, deliberation, and engagement of values and codes of a profession together with the relating society.

Ethical development helps professionals to develop a personal moral code, a sense to know the right and the wrong. The basis of personal ethics in nursing is to protect and respect the human life. Ethical knowing will guide deliberate actions. For instance, a code of Ethics for Nurses by American Nurses Association can guide nurses as they develop and refine their moral code. Many practicing nurses have on many occasions to make ethical decisions. In fact, the makes several moral choices each day thus ethical knowledge is an essential factor in nursing practice.

All types of knowing to allow nursing professionals to have a deeper understanding of self as well as their practice.