Making meaning of the new identity-as-resident: A grounded theory study

Sital Gautam, Jed Montayre, Stephen Neville

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review


Residential living has the potential to threaten older adults' established identity. This study utilized grounded theory methodology to explore how older adults make meaning of the new identity-as-resident in a residential aged care facility. Using theoretical sampling, in-depth semi-structured interviews and observation within interviews were conducted with 17 residents from two Nepalese residential aged care facilities. Data analysis involved the process of open, axial, selective coding, and constant comparative analysis as specified by grounded theory methodology. The process that older adults experience in making meaning of their new identity-as-resident involved phases of isolating, exploring, evaluating, and compromising, which led in consequence to internalization of the new identity. Furthermore, it was found that this process depends on the facility structure, rules and regulations, and the attitudes and practices of nurses/caregivers. A focus on these facilitators is crucial for managers and nurses/caregivers working in residential aged care to assist residents in constructing a positive identity-as-resident. The findings can potentially be beneficial for raising awareness, educating nurses/caregivers, developing policies for promoting a positive identity-as-resident in residential aged care facilities worldwide.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)101-112
Number of pages12
JournalNursing and Health Sciences
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • gerontology
  • grounded theory
  • identity
  • older adults
  • qualitative
  • residential aged care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


Dive into the research topics of 'Making meaning of the new identity-as-resident: A grounded theory study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this