Measuring nursing students’ cultural awareness: A cross-sectional study among three universities in southern Sweden

Jalal Safipour, Emina Hadziabdic, Sally Hultsjö, Margareta Bachrach-Lindström


Background/Objective: Cultural awareness refers to when someone is aware of his/her own and other people’s cultural values. Academic nursing education should promote students’ ability to analyze, understand, and respect people’s cultural backgrounds and their values to be able provide equitable care in a multicultural society. This essential competence for nursing students can be obtained through learning and practicing to prioritize people’s greatest needs. The aim of this study was to explore students’ cultural awareness related to their nursing education by considering their socio-demographic background.

Methods: This quantitative study was conducted by means of a pre-designed Cultural Awareness Scale. In total, 215 students participated in this study. Descriptive statistics were used to report the distribution of the data, and regression analysis was carried out to assess the statistical significance of the association between the variables.

Results: The results indicated moderately high cultural awareness among nursing students related to their general education, cognitive awareness, comfort with interaction, and clinical practice/patient care. Nevertheless, no statistically significant correlation was identified between the socio-demographic factors (sex, age, and experience of living abroad). However, being a first generation immigrant was significantly associated with better cultural awareness in terms of Patient Care/Clinical Issue.

Conclusions: In Sweden, universities are free to design their educational programs since there is no universal curriculum that applies to all the universities; nonetheless, the relatively high level of cultural awareness remained the same for the universities under investigation. This finding suggests that the importance of cultural awareness in nursing education is recognized in this context.


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Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

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

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