Preparing patient safety advocates: Evaluation of nursing students' reported experience with authority gradients in a hospital setting

Jo M. Walrath, Susan Immelt, Ellen M. Ray, Brigit Van Graafeiland, Cheryl Dennison Himmelfarb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In this post hoc review, prelicensure students' observations of communication interactions were evaluated to assess the students' ability to recognize ineffective professional communication due to an authority gradient and the resultant impact on the patient, other team members, and self. By expanding curricular content to include structured communication strategies using simulation, interprofessional education, and debriefing, students' advocacy skills should improve and potential patient safety risks should decrease as authority gradients are effectively challenged.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)174-178
Number of pages5
JournalNurse educator
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 11 2015



  • Authority gradient
  • communication
  • nursing education
  • patient advocacy
  • patient safety

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Education
  • Fundamentals and skills
  • LPN and LVN

Cite this