Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Sally Blowers

Committee Members

Patricia Hayes, Kathleen Rayman, Barbara Friesth, Katherine C. Hall


Skills of inquiry are essential outcomes from a baccalaureate nursing education. Students who demonstrate intellectual curiosity can develop effective skills of inquiry. Nurse educators must place emphasis on teaching and learning strategies which engage student intellectual curiosity. However, the concept of intellectual curiosity is not well-studied across multiple contexts of teaching and learning environments within nursing education. In addition, there is little known about the experienced nurse educator and the meaning of student intellectual curiosity across multiple teaching and learning environments. With the increased emphasis on online teaching and learning in nursing education as a solution for expanding student access and capacity, the concept of intellectual curiosity within the context of online learning needs further exploration. Under the assumptions of philosopher Max van Manen (1990, 1997) and Martin Heidegger (1962), the purpose of this qualitative, hermeneutic phenomenological study was to understand the lived experience of baccalaureate nursing student intellectual curiosity for the experienced nurse educator teaching within the online learning environment. The research question was: What does intellectual curiosity mean to experienced nurse educators teaching in the online environment? A total of eight participants from three different institutions of higher education in the southeastern United States were interviewed through a socratic approach. Diekelmann, Allen, and Tanner’s Steps for Data Analysis (1989) are utilized for data analysis. Three constitutive patterns and seven relational themes emerged through the data analysis process. Ontological considerations of findings, implications for nursing education, and future research investigations are identified.

Document Type

Dissertation - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.