Title page for ETD etd-12142011-153044

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Engelbrecht, Natasjha
Email natasjha.engelbrecht@up.ac.za
URN etd-12142011-153044
Document Title The magnitude of intra-professional violence that South African undergraduate nursing students are exposed to in the clinical learning environment
Degree MCur
Department Nursing Science
Advisor Name Title
Dr I M Coetzee Co-Supervisor
Dr T Heyns Supervisor
  • clinical learning environment
  • intra-professional violence
  • undergraduate nursing students
Date 2011-09-09
Availability unrestricted
The number of new graduates greatly affects the existence of any profession and for the nursing profession this rings very true. However, in this caring and nurturing profession many undergraduate nursing students indicate that they consider leaving the profession due to exposure to intra-professional violence. Intra-professional violence may take many forms, is perpetrated by different individuals and have negative effects on patients, staff and institutions therefore it should be identified and managed. In South Africa it has, so far, been a topic which has not received much attention.


Determine the presence of intra-professional violence experienced by undergraduate nursing students in South Africa and then create an awareness of intra-professional violence to eliminate the occurrence thereof.


A quantitative, non-experimental, explorative and descriptive design was used.


The data was collected by means of a questionnaire. The questionnaire was distributed to undergraduate nursing students at nine NEI in South Africa.


Although characteristics of oppressed group behaviour are present in undergraduate nursing students it to a low extent. Undergraduate nursing students are experiencing intra-professional violence in the clinical learning environment from different perpetrators. The most likely perpetrator is the registered nurse. The intra-professional violence does cause stress but are deemed controllable according to the undergraduate nursing students. Furthermore the results show that the presence of stress results in an increased control of intra-professional violence. The most likely coping mechanism for intra-professional violence is to do nothing.


The findings correlated with international results and indicate that intra-professional violence is experienced by undergraduate nursing students in South Africa. Oppressed group behaviour is a contributing factor, but is not the sole cause. Undergraduate nursing students do need education about intra-professional violence and engaging coping mechanisms.

Clinical relevance

If intra-professional violence is controlled, interpersonal relationships can improve. This would create an environment in which learning can be promoted and undergraduate nursing students will be able to develop their clinical skills with confidence. Furthermore, attrition will decline and nursing shortages can be countered.

2011, University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria.

Please cite as follows:

Engelbrecht, N 2011, The magnitude of intra-professional violence that South African undergraduate nursing students are exposed to in the clinical learning environment, MCur dissertation, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-12142011-153044 / >


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