Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (College of Nursing)

Schools and Centres

Nursing and Midwifery

First Supervisor

Kylie Russell

Second Supervisor

Caroline Bulsara


Nursing professionals are ageing and alternate career opportunities for females threatens nursing workforce sustainability. Largely untapped human resource and underrepresented within nursing in Australia are men. Therefore, the attraction and retention of men into nursing is imperative for the profession to support a sustainable workforce.

A qualitative longitudinal phenomenological study, explored the lived experience of nine newly graduated registered nurses who are male during their first year in their professional-practice environment. The methodological approach that guided this study was Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis (IPA). The IPA enhanced the exploration of the lived experiences of these participants by investigating the meaning of such experiences and how these are made sense of. Moreover, the analysis focused on understanding how these nurses who are male perceived their lived experiences by the researcher; positioned within the study interpreting their perceptions in an attempt to find meaning behind their lived experiences.

Purposeful sampling, using a snowball technique, ensured expertise was obtained through the voiced experiences of the nine participants who are male and newly graduated. Data collection used both individual face-to-face interview phases and participant reflective diaries in line with important mile stones acknowledged during graduate nurse transition.

Phase one findings were the emergent theme motivators for entering nursing. Elicited responses identified the influence and support of significant others and career choice triggers such as observing nurses in action. Phase two findings indicated the importance of nurse leadership and collegial support. Nurse to nurse communication and workplace marginalisation proved challenging during this transition phase. Phase three produced professional practice reality in their quest to become a valued team member and their professional self. Overall, their journey began with their desire to help others, then being faced with the reality of needing others help to develop their own skills as a professional helper. And finally, self-actualisation of being a registered nurse.

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