Theory and Practice of Nursing


Nursing Care

Holder of subject:

Dr Fiona Murphy, Associate Professor

Education providers:

  • Dr Fiona Murphy, Associate Professor
  • Jožica Ramšak Pajk, MSc, Senior Lecturer

Contact hours - lectures:


Contact hours - seminar:


Contact hours - exercises:


Individual student work:




Level of study:

Second cycle study program Nursing





Subject specific competences:

The student:

This course aims to encourage students for a better understanding about the need for theoretical basis in nursing. Students will explore which theories, models and concepts of nursing do exist,  how they could be used in nursing practice and will provide a critical analysis of these formal conceptualisations of nursing.omes familiar with the main nursing theories and concepts, their development, and different types of nursing theories;

Mandatory and recommended references:

Mandatory references:

  • McKenna HP, Pajnkihar M, Murphy FA. Fundamentals of Nursing Models, Theories and Practice. 2nd ed.Oxford: Wiley Blackwell; 2014.
  • Other relevant texts:
  • Part 1-developing theoretical foundations for nursing
  • Fawcett J. Middle-range nursing theories are necessary for the advancement of the discipline. Aquichan. 2005;5(1):32-43. Dostopno na:
  • Meleis AI. Theoretical Nursing. Development and Progress. 5th ed. Philadelphia: Wolters Kuwer/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2012.
  • Swanson KM. Empirical development of a middle range theory of caring. Nurs Research. 1991;40(3):161-6.
  • White J. Patterns of Knowing: Review, Critique, and Update. Adv Nurs Sci. 1995;17(4):73-86.
  • Marriner Tomey A, Alligood  Raile M, eds. Nursing theorists and their work.  6th ed. St. Louis, London: Elsevier Mosby; 2006.
  • Roper N, Logan WW, Tierney AJ. The Roper-Logan-Tierney model of nursing: based on activities of living. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone; 2005.

Recommended references:

  • Edwards S. The Idea of Nursing Science. J Adv Nurs. 1999;29(3):563-9.
  • Part 2-Formal conceptualisations of nursing
  • Fawcett J. The State of Nursing Science: Hallmarks of the 20th and 21st Centuries. Nurs Sci Q. 1999;12(4):311-8.
  • King I. King’s Theory of Goal Attainment. Nurs Sci Q. 1992;5(1):19-26.
  • Leininger M. Culture Care theory, Research, and Practice. Nurs Sci Q. 1996:(2):71-8.
  • Murphy F, Williams A, Pridmore J.  Nursing models and their relevance to contemporary nursing practice 1: their development, uses and limitation.  Nursing Times.  2010;106(23):18-20.
  • Pridmore J, Murphy F, Williams A. Nursing models and their relevance to contemporary nursing practice 2: articulating the nursing contribution. Nursing Times. 2010;106(24):22-5.
  • Neuman B. The Neuman Systems Model: Reflections and Projections. Nurs Sci Q. 1997;10(1):18-21.
  • Rizzo Parse R. Human Becoming: Parse’s Theory of Nursing. Nurs Sci Q. 1992;5(1):35-42.
  • Rizzo Parse R. The Humanbecoming Modes of Inquiry: Refinements. Nurs Sci Q. 2011;24(1):11-5.
  • Peplau H. Peplau's Theory of Interpersonal Relations. Nurs Sci Q. 1997;10(4):162-7.
  • Roy C. Adaptation: A Conceptual Framework for Nursing. Nurs Outlook. 1970;18(3):42-5.
  • Roy C. Future of the Roy model: Challenge to Redefine Adaptation. Nurs Sci Q. 1997;10(1):42-8.
  • Tierney A. Nursing models: extant or extinct? J Adv Nurs. 1998;28(1):77-85.
  • Watson J. The Theory of Human Caring: Retrospective and Prospective. Nurs Sci Q. 1997;10(1):49-52.
  • Part 3-Alterantives and future directions
  • Benner P. From Novice to Expert: Excellence and Power in Clinical Nursing Practice.  Menlo Park [etc.] : Addison-Wesley, cop. 1984: 13-38.
  • Butts JB, Rich KL, Fawcett J. The Future of Nursing: How Important is Discipline-Specific Knowledge? A Conversation with Jacqueline Fawcett. Nurs Sci Q. 2012;25(2):151-4.
  • Rycroft-Malone J, Seers K, Titchen A, Harvey G, Kitson A, McCormack B. What counts as evidence in evidence-based practice? J Adv Nurs. 200;47(1):81–90.
  • Schön D. The Reflective Practitioner. Basic Books; 1982.
  • Schön D. The crisis of professional knowledge and the pursuit of an epistemology of practice. J Interprof Care. 1992;6(1):49-63.
  • Reed P. The Practice Turn in Nursing Epistemology. Nurs Sci Q. 2006;19(1):36-8.
  • Rolfe G. Nursing Praxis and the Science of the Unique. Nurs Sci Q. 2006;19(1):39-43.
  • Watson J. What, may I ask is happening to nursing knowledge and professional practices? What is nursing thinking at this turn in human history? J Clin Nurs. 2005;14:913–4.


  • Journals:

Journal of Advanced Nursing
Nursing Science Quarterly
International Nursing Review
Journal of Clinical Nursing

Other recommended references:

  • Carper B. Fundamental Patterns of Knowing in Nursing. Adv Nurs Sci. 1978;1(1):13-23.
  • Chinn PL, Kramer MK. Theory and nursing: integrated knowledge development.  5th ed. St. Louis, London: Mosby; 1999.
  • George JB, ed. Nusing Theories. The Base for Professional Nursing Practice. 4th ed. Norwalk, Connecticut: Appleton & Lange; 1995.
  • Hartweg DL. Dorothea Orem: self-care deficit theory. (Notes on nursing theories 4). Newbury Park, Calif.: Sage Publ; 1991.
  • Nightingale F. Notes on Nursing: What it is and What it is not. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.; 1859: Preface, table of contents: 5-8.
  • Henderson V.  The Nature of Nursing. A Definition and Its Implications for Practice, Research, and Education. London: The MacMillan Company; 1966:6-23.
  • King IM, Fawcett J, eds. The language of nursing theory and metatheory. 3rd ed. Indianapolis: Sigma theta Tau International; 2001.
  • King IM. Curriculum and instruction in nursing: concepts and process. Norwalk: Appleton-Century-Crofts; 1986.
  • Leininger M. Transcultural Nursing. New York [etc.]: McGraw-Hill, Medical Pub. Division, cop;  2002.
  • Levine M. Introduction to Clinical Nursing. Philadelphia: Davis; 1969.
  • MacLaughlin Renpenning K, Taylor SG, eds. Self-Care Theory in Nursing: Selected Papers of Dorothea Orem. New York: Springer; 2003.
  • Marriner Tomey A, Alligood  Raile M, eds. Nursing theorists and their work.  6th ed. St. Louis, London: Elsevier Mosby; 2006.
  • Orem DE.  Nursing: concepts of practice. 6th ed. (With a contributed chapter by Susan G. Taylor and Kathie McLaughlin Renpenning). St. Louis, London: Mosby; 2001.
  • Parker M, ed. Nursing Theories and Nursing Practice. Philadelphia: F. A. Davis Company; 2001.
  • Reed PG, Shearer NC, Nicoll LH, eds. Perspectives on Nursing Theory. 4th ed. Philadelphia [etc.]: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2004.
  • Roper N, Logan WW, Tierney AJ. The Roper-Logan-Tierney model of nursing: based on activities of living. Reprinted. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone; 2005.
  • Schmieding NJ. Ida Jean Orlando: a nursing process theory. (Notes on nursing theories 12). Newbury Park, Calif.: Sage Publ.; 1993.    

Conditions for the inclusion in the study:


Assessment methods:

Examination of the whole modular content (50%)
Seminar presentation in which students will analyse an incident from their practice, apply a formal model to their practice and critically evaluate the utility of that model for their practice.(50%)

Teaching methods:

Theoretical input by using audiovisual equipment during lecture; short movie; analyzing literature in small work groups oriented on problem based learning; designated reading and homework; presentation and reporting seminar papers; discussions.