Knowledge transfer from an e-learning course to clinical practice

Mari Lahti, Raija Kontio, Anneli Pitkänen, Maritta Anneli Vaelimaeki

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

45 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Continuing education is essential in improving practical psychiatric nursing skills. However, little is known about how knowledge gained in continuing education is transferred to nurses' daily work. Objectives: To describe the transfer of knowledge gained from an e-learning course to daily practice. Design: Qualitative study design. Settings: One hospital district in Southern Finland with three specialized psychiatric wards (acute, rehabilitation, geriatric wards). Participants: Nursing staff (N=53) were recruited and 35 participated voluntarily in the e-learning continuing education course in spring 2009. Methods: The data comprised nurses' reflective writing during the e-learning course and course evaluation forms completed after the course. We used qualitative design with inductive content analysis to analyze nurses' writings. Results: The nurses were willing and able to transfer what they learned to their daily practice including the course themes, communication and co-operation among staff members, understanding of preventive and alternative treatment methods and critical thinking regarding one's own work. After the e-learning course the nurses were able to identify development areas such as issues related to staff members' daily work, the patient's role on the ward, alternative methods to avoid coercion, issues pertaining to the care environment on the ward, psychiatric nurses' education, and making an action plan for aggressive situations. All nurses would recommend the course to other nurses. Conclusions: New knowledge is easily adopted and transferred to daily practice.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)842-847
Number of pages6
JournalNurse Education Today
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Continuing education
  • E-learning
  • Knowledge
  • Psychiatric nurses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Education


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