In this issue: Research Profile: Evelyn Clingerman, What Are the Four Levels of Measurement?, Research Grant Opportunity and more...

Connections in Holistic Nursing Research 

April 2014                                                                                                                   Volume 6 Issue 2

In This Issue
In the Moment Mentoring
Clinical Nursing Research Grants
Research Profile: Evelyn Clingerman
Nominations Wanted for AHNA Research Chair
Research at AHNA Conference: 2014
Promoting Research in Holistic Nursing through Consultation
Student's Corner - Rotating Shift Work in Nursing
AHNA Researchers in Action
Opportunities for Researchers
What Are the Four Levels of Measurement?
Quick Links

Mentoring in the Moment

Guest Editorial by Sue Robertson, PhD, CNE, RN


Sue Robertson, RN, PhD, CNE
Sue Robertson, PhD, CNE, RN

Mainstream descriptions of research mentoring often characterize it as a relationship in which the less experienced researcher is guided by a more experienced researcher over a period of time - 3-6 months are often mentioned.  In contrast, Parse (2002) described mentoring as a connection based on common interests, that is "lived in moments of presence" (p. 97) in which scholars engage in dialogue.  Rather than a hierarchical relationship that requires a specific period of time, it is a lived experience of "scholarly togetherness" among those with common interests.  In these moments, meanings are co-created.  Parse's descriptions attend to the relational and guiding elements in mainstream definitions, but add holistic elements, such as presence, dialogue (equal sharing), and co-creating meaning.  This addresses both the spirit of those interacting holistically, and the "spirit" of research sharing. 


Although Parse's (2002) discussion was about the mentor-mentee relationship, I believe "in the moment" mentoring also occurs when a community of like-minded nurses meet.  I was reminded of this while listening to the March 24, 2014, Journal Club presentation of a JHN paper Holistic Nurses Stories of Personal Healing


Five experienced holistic researchers (Marlaine Smith, Rorry Zahourek, Mary Hines, Joan Engebretson, Diane Wardell) spoke of the process of doing research both from a methodological standpoint, and as a negotiation of different beliefs about and experiences with research.  The "roadmap" they gave for negotiating differences was an enlightening and mentoring experience for those who are currently part of a research team, or may do holistic research as part of a team in the future.  After discussing the results, participants dialogued about elements of the research.  Intriguing ideas emerged that the researchers had not thought of and provided ideas for potential expansion of the study or for developing new research. I believe this exemplifies the co-creation of meaning Parse described.


The development of the research consultation program is a reflection of this.  In addition, Research Committee activities, such as the webinars and Journal Club, provide forums in which members can dialogue about holistic issues of concern.  Researchers are mentored by presenters' step-by-step descriptions of the research process, and all are mentored by suggestions for utilizing results to inform practice.  Whether you actively participate in research or use research results, take advantage of this mentoring by some of the best holistic researchers. We also hope to see you at the 2014 AHNA Conference in Portland, where more research experiences and thought provoking ideas will be presented.



Parse, R. R. (2002).  Mentoring moments. Nursing Science Quarterly,15(2), 97.

American Nurses Foundation - Nursing Research Grants

The American Nurses Foundation recently announced the expansion of their Nursing Research Grants program with the support of $30,000 in funding provided by the American Nurses Credentialing Center to support clinically based research.


To support improving the quality of care provided in clinical settings and the integral role nurses play in designing better care, the American Nurses Foundation will increase its funding of studies of systematic, data-guided activities designed to bring about improvement in healthcare delivery, and is soliciting applications from clinical staff through May 1, 2014.


The Foundation will award two (2) $5,000 grants to beginning researchers and two (2) $10,000 grants to experienced researchers, with one of each to be awarded to a clinical researcher at a Magnet facility. We invite you to encourage your staff to take advantage of the opportunity to apply for a research award. For more information visit, or contact Gisele Marshall at (301) 628-5229.

Research Profile:  Evelyn Clingerman, PhD, CNE, RN 

Evelyn Clingerman, PhD, CNE, RN
Evelyn Clingerman, PhD, CNE, RN
In this issue we profile  

Evelyn Clingerman, PhD, CNE, RN. Dr. Clingerman currently serves as the Executive Director of The Bonnie Wesorick Center for Health Care Transformation at Grand Valley State University. In this role, Dr. Clingerman coordinates interprofessional scholarly work with students, faculty, and community partners that will transform health care. Areas of current work include integration of health care services, interprofessional education and collaborative practice, polarity thinking, patient focused care, informatics and technology in health care, and evidenced based practice. Dr. Clingerman mentors interprofessional students from health related disciplines and guides their scholarly work. Her teaching specialty includes ethics, theory and research with undergraduate and graduate students.


Research Committee: Could you tell us how you got started in research and how it evolved over the years? 

I'm fairly certain that my interest in research started early in my life when I thought the very best imagination game was being "a teacher" or being "a nurse." I distinctly recall in middle school that father, an experienced farmer with an abundant knowledge of agriculture, insisted I attend Farm Bureau meetings with him to learn how to "plant the fields like they were experiments." I learned to create records and logs of important data related to growing crops (e.g., sunshine days, amounts of rainfall, location of the field etc). Later, during high school, I became a caretaker for my grandfather who had experienced a stroke that left him with paralysis. The simple acts involved in his care further stimulated my curiosity to learn more about the effects of certain "nurse behaviors" (e.g., presence, listening). Once in college, I continued to think about the processes involved in caring for patients and about how to prepare nursing students for these important behaviors. During my doctoral education I focused on caring for underserved groups and in particular poor farm workers who migrated in various areas of our country. Since that time, I've tried to pull together aspects common to caring for patients and developing interprofessional students. It's amazing that many of the attributes that patients value, so also do students, providers and community partners value. It is important to recognize what we value and remain true to those values in all we do.


What were some of your biggest challenges, surprises and joys in doing holistic nursing research?  

One of the greatest joys I recall was applying my knowledge of holistic healing touch while providing community health in migrant camps. In particular, I recall that a family of a gentleman approached me and asked me if I could offer any help that was not medicine to their father/husband because he would refuse to take medication and he had seen several providers who suggested he had mental problems. This man was distraught because he had witnessed the death of a dear friend and could not let go of the image of his friend's traumatic accident. I offered him healing touch that he willingly accepted. Following our first treatment, he asked me to return each week for several weeks. He and his family thanked me numerous times for helping him to let go of the images that haunted him and had left him wounded. He eventually returned to his regular work in the fields and to participating fully in his family life. Though this took place years after I became involved in holistic nursing, I still have distinct memories of this gentleman and his family and the immense happiness they experienced as a result of this holistic nursing intervention.


My greatest challenge in holistic nursing has been inspiring novice researchers to commit to advancing holistic research. Though I see tremendous efforts accumulating, this is an area where seasoned researchers are most important. We cannot neglect our future and our future is our novice researchers. Our responsibility is to the next generation of nurse researchers. We must share this work as partners in developing the art and science of holistic nursing.


Describe your work with the research committee, especially your work with the annual conference. 

A very respectful and generous nurse researcher, Rorry Zahourek, invited me to join the Research Committee years ago. Rorry's personality is motivational and she has the innate ability to recognize strengths in each person. Her encouragement and willingness to assist in the development of each nurse involved in the Research Committee is responsible for much of the work of AHNA's Research Committee. Initially, I spoke with Rorry and asked about a possible role on the Research Committee. She was supportive, encouraging, and able to pair my strengths with another seasoned researcher. Today, we are fortunate that Rorry and others like Rorry, took the time and committed the effort to be genuine and to reach out to the "newbies" in research because now the RC has numerous members who reflect a genuine compassion and concern for advancing holistic research. My initial work involved reviewing manuscripts for the organization's journal, reviewing abstracts and grants. This work eventually lead into active participation in the development of the national meeting and to establishing an event at the annual conference whereby seasoned and committed researchers could reach out to support, advise and give direction to novice researchers. When we see one another as the arms and legs of holistic nursing research, we realize that we can make a difference and that our passion for holistic nursing and our willingness to share, partner, and grow holistic nursing research is attainable and transformative.


Add any other information that you think the readers would find interesting, especially any other work that you have done with the research committee. 

I'm now at a place in my career where I'm able to see how we can transform health care one person, student, provider, patient, or caregiver at a time. I am fortunate to be a part of AHNA and the Research Committee because all nurses and providers from numerous professions are respected and encouraged to assist one another in this work. Throughout my life, loving relationships have surrounded me and many of those relationships have been woven into this organization. What a blessing!

Nominations Wanted for AHNA Research Chair

Deadline is May 16, 2014 

Are you ready to take a more active role in AHNA? Call for nominations for Research Chair 2014-2016. Self-nominations are welcome. 

Research Chair 

  • The Research Chair oversees all research activities for the AHNA. 
  • The Research Chair shall be a registered nurse with a graduate nursing degree(s). Expertise and experience as a nurse researcher are required. Member of AHNA Research Committee for a minimum of 1 year. 
  • Research Chair Activities: 
    • Collaborates with Board of Directors Research liaison and Members in defining goals and objectives for the association and in particular, identifying direction for research activities 
    • Implements the three (3) primary goals for AHNA research: 
      1. Foster the development of research in AHNA 
      2. Supports AHNA members' research activity by developing research-related activities and oversight of/participation in current programs, such as 
        research grants, consultation, and mentorship programs.
      3. Dissemination and communication of AHNA membership research activities to the membership and healthcare community. 
    • Coordinates activities of the research committee such as research e-newsletter, webinar, journal club. etc. 
    • Recommends research representative for the AHNA Conference Planning Committee, and participates in conference-related activities (i.e., abstract reviews). 
    • Oversees Vice-Chairs and subcommittees or other task forces as well as research-related work assigned by the President or Board of Directors 

For more information, please contact Colleen Delaney at

Research at AHNA Conference: 2014

This year at the AHNA Conference in Portland there will be eleven research podium papers presented in research sections 21, 30, and 50 covering the topics listed below. Read the abstracts for the podium papers here. Ten research posters will be displayed and can be viewed for CE credit and the research posters and their authors are also listed below. 


Research Podium Papers


21 A. The Nurse's Lived Experience of Becoming an Interprofessional Leader

           Kim A. Stiles, PhD, RN, AHN-BC, CNE

21 B. Finding the Right Words: The Experience of New Nurses after ELNEC Education Integrated into a BSN Curriculum

          Cindy Barrere, PhD, RN, AHN-BC 

21 C. Preferences to Receive Information about Palliative Care for Adult Patients

          Gail Elaine Pittroff, PhD, MAPS, BSN, RN

30 A. Families' Perceptions of Pediatric Palliative Aquatics 

          Sheila Pyatt, BSN, RN  

30 B. Acupressure for ADHD: A Pilot Program to teach an Acupressure Protocol to Parents of Children Diagnosed with ADD/ADHD for Adjunctive Symptom Management.

          Elizabeth Monson, MS, MA

30 C. The Incidence and Impact of Deathbed Communication Reported by Hospice Nurses

          Elizabeth Repede, APRN-BC, MS, FNP, CMH, RN, AHN-BC

50 A. Holistic Leadership based outcomes from an RN-BSN Reiki Course

          Carey S. Clark, RN, PhD  

50 B. Improving Health-Related Quality of Life with an Innovative Holistic Nursing Model of Care Entitled Centering Chronic Pelvic Pain (CPP)

          Priscilla Abercrombie, PhD, RN, NP, AHN-BC  

50 C. The Effect of a Reflective Garden Walking Program

          Ruth McCaffrey, DNP, ARNP 

50 D. Aromatherapy Hand Massage for Older Adults with Chronic Pain

          Kathleen Cino, PhD, RN, CNE

50 E. The Effect of Sit N Fit Chair Yoga on Older Adults with Osteoarthritis

          Ruth McCaffrey, DNP, ARNP


Research Posters

  1. Stress Management as Healing for Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse (CSA): Leading the Way
    Debra Rose Wilson, PhD, MSN, RN, IBCLC, AHN-BC, CHT
  2. How Effective is Bowenwork?
    Sandra Gustafson, RN, BSN, MHS  
  3. Effect Of Healing Touch Education On Self-Care In Nurses
    Pegi Black, MSN, FNP-BC, ACNP-BC, ACHPN, CHTP/I  
  4. Use of Acupressure in Ambulatory Surgical Patients at High Risk for Post-Operative Nausea and Vomiting
    Debra Hofmann, DNP, MS, RN  
  5. Contemplative Pedagogy in Nursing: A Holistic Education Framework
    Sandra McBournie, RN, BS, MED  
  6. The Impact of "Snack and Relax" on Nurses Professional Quality of Life
    Perpetua S. Markwell, RN, BSN  
  7. Preparing Novice Critical Care Nurses to be Self-care Leaders for Tomorrow
    Deborah McElligott, DNP, RN
  8. Hand Massage... Creating a Calmer You in Two Minutes  
    Susi Roos, RN
  9. Room: Bringing Forth an Awareness of Compassion Fatigue within the Oncology Nursing Environment and Offering an Innovative Solution Based on Self-Care  
    Heidi Larder, MSN, RN, OCN  
  10. Leading  Holistic Nurses Through Evidence-Based Practice: the Effects of Aromatherapy on Anxiety and Nausea in Cancer Patients Undergoing Port Access  
    Marty Downey, RN, MSN, PhD, AHN-BC, CHTP, CNE
Learn more about the AHNA conference at 

Promoting Research and Quality Improvement in Holistic Nursing through Consultation Service

AHNA Research Consultation Service

The AHNA Research Committee is now offering a program for those nurses who want to conduct research or are working on a quality improvement project, but need some guidance. If you are a new researcher who would like some assistance, the AHNA Research Consultation Program is for you.

For AHNA members, this service is provided for $20 for one research consultation and $50 for three, and can be purchased online at Consultations are expected to be less than one hour, and will be most productive when the Consultation Request Form is thoughtfully completed. For example, providing your area of research interest and other descriptors will enable the program manager to better match you with a consultant. After purchasing your consultation service, you will receive an email receipt that guides you in the process for your consultation. This program is managed by Cindy Barrere, who can be contacted at

The AHNA Research Committee is very excited to make this service available to the members, continuing their focus to promote and support future researchers in holistic nursing.

Student's Corner - An Abstract

 Rotating Shift Work in Nursing:

A Qualitative Analysis from a Holistic Health Perspective

Rebecca Ronaldson

Aspen University - N599 Capstone Project


The goals of this study were to examine and better understand the lived experiences of nurses who worked internal rotating shifts, to document the negative health impact shown in the current literature, and to interpret how this type of schedule influences the holistic health of the nursing population. With the increased awareness of the detrimental effects of long term rotating shift work on employees' health, it is essential to better understand what these nurses, who make up a large portion of shift workers, are experiencing. By interpreting how it impacts the individual nurse's own wellness in the short and long term, this study assisted in the discussion regarding the overall health influence of rotating shifts. This study also examined the lived experiences of nurses working internal rotating shifts through interviews, self-reflection, and written narratives. The results are interpretive and seek to understand how the holistic health of the individual nurse is affected and shaped by this kind of work. The results suggested, along with evidence from the multiple quantitative research projects reviewed, that this type of shift work is unhealthy for the nurse and impacts the holistic health of the individual in a negative way. The personal accounts and reflections gained through the interviews helped to demonstrate the impact on the short and long term health of the individual, and seeks to open the door for healthier nursing schedules and occupational health related dialogue pertaining to this kind of shift work. 


Masters and Doctoral students are invited and encouraged to send abstracts of their thesis/dissertations/quality improvement projects and submit to Connections in Holistic Nursing Research for possible publication in the Student Corner. This gives students an opportunity to publish and allow others to gain interest in their work. If you are a mentor or advisor for a graduate student, please encourage them to share with us.  Please send your submissions to Dr. Michalene A. King at or  We look forward to reading about your scholarly work.
AHNA Researchers in Action

Rebecca A. Cox Davenport. (March/April 2014). A grounded theory of faculty's use of humanization to create online course climate Journal of Holistic Nursing, 32(1), 16-24.doi:10.1177/0898010113499201

Full text available to AHNA members. Learn how.


Doreen C. Harper, Kimberly S. Davey, & Pamela N. Fordham. (March/April 2014). Leadership lessons in global nursing and health from the Nightingale Letter Collection at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Journal of Holistic Nursing, 32(1), 16-24.doi:10.1177/0898010113497835

Full text available to AHNA members. Learn how.


Maryann Abendroth, Catherine A. Greenblum, & Jennifer A. Gray. (January/February 2014). The value of peer-led support groups among caregivers of persons with Parkinson's disease. Holistic Nursing Practice, 28(1), 48-54. DOI 10.1097/HNP.0000000000000004


"Families Perceptions of the Pediatric Palliative Aquatics Program"

Submitted by Sheila Pyatt, BSN,, (510) 734-8130


This study focuses on children receiving respite care at George Mark Children's House (GMCH) in San Leandro, California ( The primary researcher is Erin Gaab, PhD (University of California, Merced). Dr. Gaab interviewed parents using a focus group format. Sheila Pyatt developed the Pediatric Palliative Aquatics Program especially for children receiving hospice, transitional or end of life care at this facility.


This qualitative study was conducted at the first freestanding pediatric palliative care facility in the country. Although many "special needs aquatics programs" exist across the country, to Ms. Pyatt's knowledge, she and Dr. Gaab are the only ones who work in warm water with actively dying children and their families. The experience demonstrated that nurses are uniquely qualified to do this work, since they are skilled palliative care practitioners. The study is now drawing to a close. It has been accepted for presentation at the upcoming AHNA Conference in Portland, Oregon. 


AHNA members names in bold. We would love to hear about your research. Have you started your dissertation, had a paper published, presented, etc. Send your "Researcher in Action" to For publications, click on the article title for link to abstract (if available).

Opportunities for Researchers

Call for Articles from Holistic Maternal Child Nurses and Educators

Holistic Nursing has a golden opportunity to showcase holism within the specialty of Maternal Child Care. The International Childbirth Educators Journal is seeking holistic articles for its summer/fall journal. The focus of this special edition is highlighting holism within the childbearing year and first year of life. This is a peer reviewed journal that is friendly to first time writers. The due date is May 1, 2014. For more information: 


Call for Abstracts: ICN Seoul Korea June 2015

International Council of Nurses Seoul Korea June 2015The International Council of Nurses has opened their site and is inviting abstracts for the ICN Conference June 19-23, 2015, in Seoul. This gathering of thousands of nurses will explore the importance of cross-cultural understanding and global cooperation in nursing. The Conference will provide opportunities for nurses to build relationships and to disseminate nursing knowledge and leadership across specialties, cultures and countries. The three ICN pillars - Professional Practice, Regulation and Socio-Economic Welfare - will frame the scientific program and the dynamic exchange of experiences and expertise.  The deadline for submission is October 14, 2014.  Click here to download the brochure and call for abstracts 


Call for Abstracts: ANA 2015 Quality Conference
ANA requests submission of abstracts for their 2015 ANA Quality Conference held February 4-6, 2015 in Disney's Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando Florida. This year's theme is "On the Frontline of Quality: The Future of Health Care." Presentations will highlight achievements of key nursing leaders, quality in patient outcome, and models of care. Abstracts will be accepted through April 30, 2014 with notification of acceptance provided by June 30, 2014.


Call for Articles for Special Issue of Journal of Addictions Nursing
The purpose of this special issue is to disseminate current knowledge on a variety of topics related to holistic, complementary and integrative therapies in addiction treatment and to offer consideration for further development of the understanding of the role of complementary integrative modalities in addiction nursing. For more information you can send inquiries to: Christine Vourakis, Editor at: To view and download the instructions for authors, please go to: Authors can submit original papers for a special issue review to:

Research Term:   

What Are the Four Levels of Measurement? 

By Pamela Crary, PhD, RN


the four levels of measurment
This figure provides a summary of the four levels of measurement, the relationship between each level, and each level's properties.

When collecting data in a quantitatively designed study, variables are conceptually defined with words similar to a dictionary definition. They are also operationally defined through ways of measurement using numbers. There are different levels of measurement depending on the research question being asked and the types of statistical analyses planned. Collecting the correct levels of measurement is necessary to assure that appropriate analyses can be done. 


There are four levels of measurement; Nominal, Ordinal, Interval, and Ratio. One level of measurement is not necessarily better than another.


What is nominal level of measurement?

The nominal level of measurement is the most primitive or lowest level of classifying information.  Nominal variables include categories of people, events, and other phenomena that are named, are exhaustive in nature, and are mutually exclusive.  These categories are discrete and non-continuous.


Example:  gender - Male or Female can be scored with 1 for Male and 2 for Female; likewise a patients' blood type could be categorized as 1=AB, 2=A, 3=B, 4=O. 


No one category is more or less than another; they are simply categorized with a number for statistical analyses.  They are not manipulated mathematically. 


What is ordinal level of measurement?

The ordinal level of measurement is second in terms of its refinement as a means of classifying information.  Ordinal implies that the values of variables can be rank-ordered from highest to lowest. Data are measured on an ordinal scale and subjects are ranked from lowest to highest and from most to least. 


For example, household income:  1=$0-$4999, 2=$5000-$9999, 3=$10000-$19999, 4=$20000-$29999, and 5=$30000-$49999.  


Ordinal data are not manipulated mathematically and the distance or interval between data is not always equal.


What is interval level of measurement?

Interval level of measurement is quantitative in nature. Interval level of measurement refers to the third level of measurement in relation to complexity of statistical techniques that can be used to analyze data. Variables within this level of measurement are assessed incrementally, and the increments are equal. Many nursing, social and psychological science studies measure data using tools or instruments that consist of a Likert type scale such as the one below. 


For example:  Respondents are asked to select from a series of statements that reflect agreement or disagreement on a 5-point scale. 1=strongly agree, 2=agree, 3=undecided, 4=disagree and 5=strongly disagree. 


The individual units are equally distant from one point to the other.  Interval data do not have an absolute zero. 


What is ratio level of measurement?

Ratio level of measurement is characterized by variables that are assessed incrementally with equal distances between the increments and a scale that has an absolute zero.  Ratio variables exhibit the characteristics of ordinal and interval measurement and can also be compared by describing it as two or three times another number or as one-third, one-quarter, and so on. Variables like time, length, and weight are ratio scales but can also be measured using nominal or ordinal scale. The mathematical properties of interval and ratio scales are very similar, so the statistical procedures are common for both of the scales.


Ratio level data meets all the rules of other forms of measure; it includes mutually exclusive categories, exhaustive categories, rank ordering, equal spacing between intervals, and a continuum of values. Ratio level measurement also includes a value of zero.


View AHNA's growing research glossary. To contribute a definition or suggest a term, please contact



 Feel free to share the content in this eNewsletter with your e-mail contacts, list-serves, or favorite discussion boards/ blogs. Please just be sure to mention that Connections is a benefit of AHNA membership.


Connections in Holistic Nursing Research    
Michalene A. King PhD, RN, CNE 

Pamela Crary PhD, RN

Sue Roe DPA, MS, BSN, RN
AHNA Board of Directors Coordinator for Research: 
Colleen Delaney PhD, RN, AHN-BC
Chair of the Research Committee of AHNA:
Sue Robertson RN, PhD, CNE  


Although the AHNA supports the concepts of holism, it refrains from endorsing specific practitioners, organizations, products, services or modalities. Opinions expressed in this eNewsletter may not reflect the position of the AHNA.