Factors associated with gerontological career choice: The role of curriculum type and students’ attitudes

Jung-Ah Lee, Dana Rose Garfin, Stephanie Vaughn, Young-Shin Lee


Background and objective: Caring for a growing aging population presents a challenge in contemporary health care. This study aims to identify factors associated with nursing student’s career choice in older adult care and predictors of attitudes toward older adults. Such information is critical to inform effective gerontological nursing education.

Methods: Undergraduate nursing students (N = 411) from three nursing schools in California participated in a cross-sectional, web-based survey.

Results: In covariate-adjusted analyses, students who had prior experiences taking gerontology-related courses, working with older adults, living with older adults, being confident in providing older adults care, and having lower negative attitudes toward older adults were more likely to consider a future career in gerontological nursing. Students’ confidence in older adult care was negatively correlated with negative attitudes towards older adults.

Conclusions: To increase students’ career choice in gerontology, nursing schools should provide more gerontology content in nursing curricula and explore avenues to increase student confidence in older adult care. 

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/jnep.v8n4p1

Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

ISSN 1925-4040 (Print)   ISSN 1925-4059 (Online)

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