Our research in nursing history

The Nursing History Research Unit builds upon the expertise of the staff and students within Sydney Nursing School who are actively engaged in researching, writing and publishing in the area of nursing and health care.

CURRENT AND PAST SPECIAL AREAS OF RESEARCH

Mary Truby King Insight into fame and managing relationships with both adoptive and natural families Read more (Clare Ashton)

The life trajectory of WWI Nurses Read more (Clare Ashton)

NSW Bush Nursing Association (R Lynette Russell AO, in collaboration with Judith Cornell AM)

Olive Anstey (Sue Forsyth PhD)

Emilie Kent, Mary Kirkpatrick (Dr Noeline Kyle)

Australian Army Nurses, World War I (Ruth Rae PhD)

Australian Army Nurses, 1939–1946 (Joyce Edwards) – including an outstanding collection of oral history audiotapes of many of the nurses who served, and survived, this conflict and an accurate nominal roll of those who served (including any awards) during this time

Nurses in the Armed Services
Nurses in the Armed Services

RESEARCH ARCHIVES

Honorary Archivist
Emeritus Professor R Lynette Russell AO, RN PhD

Honorary Assistant Archivist
Ross Alford, MIIA

The NHRU holds an interesting and varied collection of archival material which can be accessed by those interested, or working in, a variety of areas associated with nursing and health care history.

Major holdings
  • An extensive collection of reports (government and non-government) relevant to nursing and nursing education (Australia, United Kingdom, North America, New Zealand), 1939–current
  • A collection of reports (government and non-government) relevant to the higher education sector, 1939–current
  • Documents relating to the various institutions associated with and/or part of Sydney Nursing School (Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery, University of Sydney), including administrative and educational records of the School of Nursing (College of Paramedical Studies, Cumberland College of Health Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Sydney); Department of Nursing Studies; Division of Nursing Studies, Institute of Nursing, (Sydney College of Advanced Education) and the Faculty of Nursing, (University of Sydney) (from 1973)
  • Nursing and related textbooks prior to 1970
  • Personal collections of individuals associated with nursing and nursing education within the Australian and UK contexts
  • The Home of Hope registers 1903–1904 (limited access)
Aquisition focus
  • The history of nurse education in Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States of America
  • Administrative and educational records of the higher educational institutions associated with Sydney Nursing School (Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery), including the School of Nursing (College of Paramedical Studies, Cumberland College of Health Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Sydney); Department of Nursing Studies; Division of Nursing Studies, Institute of Nursing, (Sydney College of Advanced Education) and the Faculty of Nursing, (University of Sydney)
  • Private collections relevant to the above
  • Rare nursing textbooks
Research topics

The following are possible research topics for which relevant material can be found within the Nursing History Research Unit archives:

  • A variety of aspects of nursing and nursing education within the Australian, North American, United Kingdom and New Zealand settings
  • Government and non-government involvement in nursing and nursing education within the above settings
  • Curriculum and syllabus content of programs conducted for nursing (undergraduate and postgraduate) within higher educational institutions
  • Types of educational programs for nurses within this setting
  • Information about nurse academics teaching within this setting including qualifications, teaching and research areas
  • The introduction of nursing as a discipline into the higher education sectorv – in particular, the establishment of the School of Nursing (College of Paramedical Studies, Cumberland College of Health Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Sydney); Department of Nursing Studies; Division of Nursing Studies, Institute of Nursing, (Sydney College of Advanced Education) and the Faculty of Nursing, (University of Sydney).
  • Administrative aspects of The Home of Hope – in particular, details of those admitted during the 1903–1904 period (limited access)