Barriers to higher education in nursing in Peshawar, Pakistan

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Nursing (MScN)


School of Nursing and Midwifery, Pakistan


Higher Education (HE) in nursing is crucial for the development of a well-educated and competent workforce that meets the challenging healthcare demands of the country. It is also important for producing scholars, researchers, educators, and planners needed for the advancement of the nursing profession. Purpose. This study aimed to identify the barriers to HE in nursing and the important factors associated with it, in Peshawar, Pakistan. Methodology. A quantitative analytical cross-sectional study was conducted to identify the barriers to HE and the factors associated with it. The data was collected from 234 nurses, through a structured questionnaire, in two public and two private, tertiary care hospitals, in Peshawar. Ethical considerations were taken care of throughout the research process. The data were analysed using the Statistical Packages for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 20, and Stata version 11. Frequencies and percentages were calculated for all variables. The logistic regression technique was used to examine the association between the socio-demographic factors and barriers to HE. Adjusted odds ratios (OR) with their 95% Confidence Interval (CI) were reported. Results:The results revealed that the participants of the current study were facing different barriers, including organizational (63.83%), family (45.73%), personal (32.48%), and attitudinal (30.34%). The findings revealed that nurses with limited years of work experience were more likely to face barriers to HE (OR= 4.14; 95% CI: 1.17 — 14.61). Also, nurses working on lower designations were more likely to face barriers as compared to those on administrative posts (OR= 3.88; 95% CI: 1.20 — 12.52). Additionally, low monthly income and Pathan ethnicity were also significantly associated with barriers to HE. The participants recommended increasing opportunities for HE, ensuring transparency in the nomination and selection process, addressing the financial considerations, and motivating nurses through incentives. Conclusion: The government needs to establish new institutes across the province and to give due importance to the nursing profession, by developing and utilizing nurses' full potential. The employers need to devise transparent policies for the further education of nurses. They are also required to facilitate nurses for the professional development and attainment of the highest standards of nursing knowledge and skills.

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