Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Mary Ramirez


In 2009, the National League for Nurses (NLN) encouraged nursing programs to transition from traditional ways of teaching to concept-based curricula. Previous research revealed that nursing faculty exhibited a lack of expertise to maintain changes in new curricula. The purpose of this qualitative study was to address the Level 1 faculty members' difficulty in sustaining a new concept-based curriculum by understanding what strategies may assist faculty in facilitating students' learning through concept-based curriculum and which strategies may present barriers. The Level 1 faculty members were the first nurse educators to transition to and implement the new concept-based curriculum. These educators taught freshmen-level student nurses. Ausubel's assimilation theory was used as the conceptual framework for this study. Research questions addressed the experiences, perceptions, and strategies used that encouraged or created barriers during the transition of the Level 1 faculty to a concept-based curriculum. Data were collected using semistructured interviews from 11 Level 1 faculty members who were the first to implement the new curriculum. Open coding and thematic analysis were used to interpret interview data.. Results indicated 2 themes about barriers to transitioning, as well as resistance to and resentment toward change. Strategies to encourage transition were to collaboratively learn about approaches to change and use of evaluation tools. A collaborative professional development workshop project was developed based on findings. Results of this study and project could lead to positive social change in nursing faculty and nursing curriculum resulting in nurses' transitioning to and sustaining a new concept-based curriculum.