The nurse-patient communication: Voices from nursing students

Chung Yee Zenobia Chan, Claudia K.Y. Lai

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Effective communication skills have been found to be one of the pivotal factors in building positive interpersonal relationships. Little is known about nursing undergraduates' perspectives on communicating with patients. This study aimed to explore nursing students' perspectives and experiences of nurse-patient communication in their clinical placement. The participants included 21 second-year undergraduates and 21 first-year master's students. Interviews were conducted in Cantonese and then transcribed in Chinese and translated into English. A content analysis approach was adopted to analyze the data. Five themes emerged from the interview data. 'The necessity of nurse-patient communication' reveals why the students valued nurse-patient communication. 'The conversation contents' describes the content of the conversations that students typically had with patients. The third theme is 'self-reflection on the nurse-patient communication'. The last two themes, 'the communication pattern in different hospital settings' and 'the obstacles impeding nurse-patient communication', are about the students' communication styles in different hospitals and the barriers they encounter. To improve students' communication skills, educators and clinical staff should listen to students, enhance students' reflective skills and strengthen their confidence. Through understanding students' difficulties in the nurse-patient communication experience and the skills that they lack, educators can provide them with helpful recommendations to improve their communication skills in clinical practice. The results of this study reveal that students' nurse-patient communication skills need to be improved.
Original languageEnglish
Article number20160023
JournalInternational Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 20 Dec 2017


  • conversation content
  • nurse-patient communication
  • qualitative study

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


Dive into the research topics of 'The nurse-patient communication: Voices from nursing students'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this