Final clinical practicum, transition experience and turnover intentions among newly graduated nurses: A cross sectional study

Anu-Marja Kaihlanen, Marko Elovainio, Elina Haavisto, Leena Salminen, Timo Sinervo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The shortage of nurses is a global issue, and turnover rates are especially high for newly graduated nurses. The transition from student to nurse is often described as challenging, and the final clinical practicum before graduation is suggested to be important in preparing graduating students for the transition. However, little is known about the actual relationships between the final clinical practicum, transition and turnover intentions. Objectives: To examine whether the final clinical practicum experience is associated with the transition experience and turnover intentions of newly graduated nurses, and whether the transition experience mediates the potential relationship between the practicum and turnover intentions. Design: Cross-sectional survey study. Settings: The study was carried out in Finland (October–December 2018). Participants: Registered nurses graduated within the past two years (n = 712). Methods: A new survey instrument with five subscales was developed for measuring the final clinical practicum experience. Transition experience was measured on four scales that demonstrated the emotional, physical, socio-developmental and intellectual domains of the transition: Psychological distress, sleep quality, role conflict/ambiguity, perception of transition and educational preparation. Turnover intentions from job and profession were asked about with two questions. Structural equation modelling was used to explore the associations between the variables. The models were adjusted for multiple potential confounders. Results: Final clinical practicum experience was associated with all domains of the transition experience and turnover intentions. The association between the practicum and turnover intentions was partly mediated by the emotional (psychological distress) and socio-developmental (role conflict and ambiguity) domains of the transition. Conclusions: Our findings provide new evidence about the associations between the specific final clinical practicum dimensions and turnover intentions and the specific mechanisms linking this association. These results highlight the importance of final clinical practicums and suggest targets for improving nurses' transition processes during their first years in practice.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104245
JournalNurse Education Today
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2020
Externally publishedYes
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Final clinical practicum
  • Newly Graduated Nurse
  • Nursing education
  • Transition
  • Turnover intentions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Education


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