An Exploration of the Experiences of Cultural Safety Educators in New Zealand: An Action Research Approach

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This research is a study of the experiences of four cultural safety educators in nursing education in Aotearoa, New Zealand. Action research methods assisted the participants to implement change in their practice and gain positive personal involvement in the study. Reflective diaries provided the major tool in this process as participants were able to achieve at least one action research cycle by identifying issues, planning action, observing the action, and reflecting. The findings of the research revealed that the participants not only coped with everyday stressors of teaching but were also required to formulate knowledge for cultural safety. For the Maori participants, their stress was confounded with recruiting and retaining Maori students and macro issues such as commitment to their iwi (tribe). Lack of support to teach cultural safety was identified to be a key theme for all participants. An analysis of this theme revealed that many issues were organizational in nature and out of their control. Action research provided a change strategy for participants to have a sense of control of issues within their practice. Recommendations include the following: support for cultural safety educators to have a dialogue on a regular basis, the introduction of nurse educator programmes, paid leave provisions for educators to conduct and publish research so that a body of knowledge can be developed, and that Maori cultural safety educators be recognised for their professional and cultural strengths so that they do not fall victim to burnout.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)339-348
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Transcultural Nursing
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2003
Externally publishedYes


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