Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Barbara Barrett


Serious mental illness (SMI) is common in America and is associated with behavioral and emotional conditions that can lead to serious functional impairment and interfere with a person's decision making and general life activities, negatively impacting themselves and their caregivers, families, and communities. Psychosocial rehabilitation (PSR) is one evidence-based, person-centered approach known to be effective in helping individuals diagnosed with SMI manage their symptoms and improve their daily functioning. To effectively participate in providing PSR, caregivers must have special PSR knowledge. A staff education program was developed to educate and increase staff knowledge about PSR. The purpose of the project was to determine if an evidence-based staff education program would increase staff knowledge about PSR. The Iowa model of evidence-based practice was the theoretical framework that guided the project. Thirty direct-care staff participated in the staff education program. An assessment of participants’ knowledge was performed before and after the education intervention using a pretest-posttest design. Findings were compared using descriptive statistics. Participant scores on the 10-item pretest assessment ranged from 10% to 92 % with average of 61.5%. Participant scores on the posttest assessment ranged from 78% to 100% with an average of 95.1%. The findings revealed that the staff education program was effective in improving the knowledge of PSR staff. The increase in staff knowledge can lead to performance improvement and ultimately yield safer and more efficient PSR care to patients diagnosed with SMIs that can enhance patient recovery and positively impact social change.