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NR 501 Week 6 Discussion-Collaboration Cafe

NR 501 Week 6 Discussion-Collaboration Cafe

During this week’s Collaboration Café, we will discuss borrowed theories shared by nursing. At the beginning of this course, I discussed how vital Erik Erikson’s Theory of Psychosocial Development is to my nursing practice as a Pediatric Rehabilitation nurse. I will dive into more detail about how this theory benefits my practice. According to Erikson (1950), his Theory of Psychosocial Development describes a succession of eight stages a person should move through from birth to adulthood, with the first five applied to children. Nurses need to understand this theory to gather information about their patients, appropriately respond to them, and provide patient-centered care (Erikson, 1950). Nurses can help patients having difficulty in the developmental stages by providing care directed to the appropriate location. How I transition through nursing in caring for my patients reflects Erikson’s theory. Understanding this theory helps assess patients, develop nursing diagnoses and care plans, carry out interventions, and evaluate care plans and implementations (Dunkel & Harbke, 2017). This theory also shows the importance of continuity of care when caring for patients, especially Pediatric Rehab patients. Ultimately, Erikson’s and many other ideas help improve the quality of nursing care by allowing nurses to understand what they do for patients and why.

Every day in my nursing practice, I use Erik Erikson’s Theory of Psychosocial Development to develop a comprehensive and holistic care plan for my patients (Dunkel & Harbke, 2017). Erik Erikson’s various stages are simple to understand and easily applied to all age groups. At the psychosocial development stage, identity vs. role confusion, patients face cultivating a sense of self (Erikson, 1950). Creating a sense of self is not easy to achieve, especially when in the hospital. The patients I care for as a pediatric Rehabilitation nurse usually spend one to two months in the hospital, so as a nurse, you can aid your patients by talking with them about their beliefs, goals, and values (Dunkel & Harbke, 2017). A prime example of how this theory applies to my nursing practice is the number of transgender teenagers I care for. This stage of Erikson’s theory perfectly relates to them as they struggle to find where they fit in with family, peers, and Society. Those with adequate support and encouragement become independent and develop a strong sense of who they are, while teenagers who do not will become insecure and confused about their future (Erikson, 1950).

NR 501 Week 6 Discussion-Collaboration Cafe

Recently, I cared for a teenage girl who identified as male and wanted to be treated as such. I made sure I called him Jack instead of Jackie or Jacqueline, and I sat down with him and got to know him. I made the necessary changes in his chart to ensure this information was conveyed to all providers. He did not have support from his family, and because of this, he was depressed. He told me that even though he “knows who he is,” he still lacks a sense of identity and finds it difficult to develop genuine relationships with his peers. Then COVID happened, and he felt a more profound loneliness. This inability to form relationships and feel supported might cause further complications in the next stage, intimacy versus isolation. I spent much of my care for Jack advocating for him and his family relationship. As Jack requested, I ensured the social worker and the chaplain were involved in the care plan. He spent a great deal of time with the Rehab Psychologist, and these providers also spent a lot of time with his parents. I helped him to feel comfortable writing down his feelings in a journal and become more confident with who he is. Familiarizing with Erikson’s theory makes me more sensitive to my patients and understanding their origin. Being familiar with this theory will enable me not to take things patients do personally but instead realize that they might have had difficulty in life or one of Erikson’s stages. I will utilize Erikson’s theory as a Nurse Educator by helping change how nurses understand information and perform a task or skill.


Dunkel, C. & Harbke, C. (2017). A review of the measures of Erikson’s stages of psychosocial development: evidence for a general factor. Journal of Adult Development, 24(1), 58-76.

Erikson, E. (1950). Childhood and Society (1st ed.). W.W. Norton & Co.


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NR 501 Week 6 Discussion-Collaboration Cafe

While the focus of this course is nursing theory, frequently, we use a non-nursing or borrowed theory to
help us manage or guide a situation or change. Think of a time when you were … in a case or a
change that … to occur. If you feel you have not applied a … theory in your practice, can you think of a
position where applying a borrowed theory would be beneficial to your practice? Which non-nursing
or borrowed idea do you feel was or could be used to help guide this situation or change? Why was it essential
to use this theory for this situation? How did it help the problem or change occur?

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