BSN Programs

To find out more

CONTACT KPU for admission information.

Learning Activities
Computers in Nursing Practice


“Information technology is a break-through tool, it enables us to explore and better understand the informational and cognitive foundations of nursing.”
- Heller, Romano, Damrosch & McCarthy, 1988, p. 332

Nursing practice is an information intensive process which is founded on a body of knowledge, dependent on expert skill in acquiring and using information. Technical advances have influenced all sectors of modern society, extending to health care. Health professionals, including nurses, must meet the challenges of the changing health care delivery system by becoming computer literate.

Besides knowing how to operate a computer to perform professional tasks, nurses need to be aware of the social and ethical impact of the use of computer technology. Powerful, portable personal computers enable nurses to manage information at a client’s hospital bedside, in the client’s home, and in various community settings. More and more, computerized nursing information systems are being used to support nursing practice, education, research and administration.

Ends in View

This learning activity is intended to give the learner the opportunity to:

a) recognize how computer technology can enhance nursing practice, education, administration and research.

b) develop inquiry, critical thinking, and self-reflection skills in relation to using computer technology in nursing.

c) acknowledge the utility of computers as enabling tools for students and nurses.

d) investigate how computers are presently used by nurses working in a variety of health care settings.

In Preparation

1. Browse: Thede, L. & Sewell, J. Informatics and Nursing: Competencies and Applications. http://dlthede.net/Informatics/Informatics.html

2. Read: Newbold, S. (2002). Nursing Informatics Frequently Asked Questions

3. Assess: Your own level of comfort with working with computers and other technologies. .

In Practice

1. Complete the P.A.T.C.H. Self-assessment tool for Cyberphobia and the Personal Learning Plan for developing informatics Competencies.

2. Observe what kind of computer equipment is used within the work setting as you make your observations. What functions are they used for? If there are no computers in the work place, find out if any are planned in the near future.

If possible, ask to view a sample of the documentation produced on a computer within the Nurses’ workplace. Share your observations in class.

3. Briefly interview a faculty member about how they use computers in their work.

In Reflection

1. Examine your own feelings and preparedness for using computers in your Nursing work.

2. Reflect on your own level of computer literacy. What do you need to know, be, and do to become a proficient computer user?

3. Cyberphobia is a term used to describe symptoms of anxiety and dread related to using computers and technology. Do you recognize any personal feelings of cyberphobia? If so, what can you do to work through these feelings?


Thede, L. & Sewell, J. Informatics and Nursing: Competencies and Applications. http://dlthede.net/Informatics/Informatics.html


Nursing Informatics Integration for the BSN and BSN-AE Nursing Programs at Kwantlen Polytechnic University
Design & Content by June Kaminski, RN MSN PhD(c) - 1999 - 2021
All rights reserved. No reproduction without written permission