Belinda Ryan (Kennedy)

Exploring the relationship between personality type and length of service within emergency nursing

Supervisors: Donna Waters and Kate Curtis

It has previously been demonstrated that one’s choice to work, or remain in a particular field is related to the characteristics of an individual’s personality (1,4). Previous research has found that nurses are attracted to a particular area of nursing as a result of personality, and clusters of like personalities were identified in various areas of nursing (3), however this research does not identify whether clusters exist within varying clinical nursing specialties.

A review of the literature has identified that there is limited research that explores the personality type of nurses working within the field of emergency nursing. The research that does exist was conducted over 20 years ago. Emergency nursing has developed and changed considerably over the last 35 years (2). With such changes, it is feasible that the types of personalities identified within the area of emergency nursing 20 years ago may no longer be an accurate reflection of today’s emergency nurses.

Aims of the study
  1. Identify the personality types of nurses working within a large metropolitan emergency department, in order to examine whether clusters of like personality exist.
  2. Examine whether there is any relationship between personality types and period of time working within the area of emergency nursing.

If like previous research exploring the personality types of nurses, it can be identified that there are clusters of like personalities within the field of emergency nursing and this corresponds with time spent working within the field, this information has the potential to provide the basis for the development of strategies to enhance recruitment and retention of staff within emergency departments.