RCN Research Society and Nursing Research's Top 50
In 2009, the RCN Research Society celebrated 50 years under the auspices of the RCN, and amongst its celebrations, a series of surveys were conducted to ascertain the most influential piece of nursing research over the past 50 years.
You can read the full article celebrating the Research Society's golden anniversary by Professor Annie Topping, Vice Chair of the RCN Research Society. Below is a list of references for those studies cited through the various surveys.
List of references
1. Aiken L., Smith, H., and Lake, E. (1994) Lower Medicare mortality among a set of hospitals known for good nursing care. Medical Care, 32 (8), p.771-787 Available at:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8057694 (abstract) (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
2. Aiken, L., Patrician, P. (2000) Measuring organizational traits of hospitals: the Revised Nursing Work Index, Nursing Research, May/June, 49 (3), p.146-153 Available at:
http://journals.lww.com/nursingresearchonline/Abstract/2000/05000/Measuring_Organizational_Traits_of_Hospitals__The.6.aspx (abstract) (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
3. Altschul, A. (1972) Patient-nurse interaction: a study of interaction patterns in acute psychiatric wards, Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone (University of Edinburgh, Department of Nursing Studies, monographs, no. 3)
4. Benner, P. (1984) From novice to expert: excellence and power in clinical nursing practice, Menlo Park, CA: Addison-Wesley
5. Boore, J.R.P. (1978) Prescription for recovery: the effect of pre-operative preparation of surgical patients on post-operative stress, recovery and infection, London: Royal College of Nursing (RCN research series)
6. Bowers, L. et al (2006) The City 128 study of observation and outcomes on acute psychiatric wards. Research report produced for the National Co-ordinating Centre for the National Institute for Health Research Service Delivery and Organisation Programme (NCCSDO), London: NCCSDO. Available at: http://www.kcl.ac.uk/ioppn/depts/hspr/research/ciemh/mhn/projects/City-128.aspx (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
7. Bowers, L., Jarrett, M. and Clark, N. (1999) Absconding, part 1: Why patients leave. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, June, 6(3), p.199-205
8. Brooker, C. and White, E. (1997) The fourth quinquennial national community mental health nursing census of England and Wales: final report, Manchester: University of Manchester
9. Brooker, C. et al (1994) The outcome of training community psychiatric nurses to deliver psychosocial intervention, British Journal of Psychiatry, August, 165 (8), p. 222-230
10. Butterworth T. et al (1997) It is good to talk: an evaluation study of clinical supervision and mentorship in England and Scotland, Manchester: School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting, University of Manchester
11. Cartwright A., Hockey L. and Anderson J.L., (1973) Life before death, London: Routledge and Kegan Paul
12. Centre for Policy in Nursing Research (2001) Promoting research in nursing and the allied health professions, Higher Education Funding Council for England, (Research report 01/64) Available at:
http://www.hefce.ac.uk/pubs/HEFCE/2001/01_64.htm (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
13. Chalmers, K., and Luker, K. (1991) The development of the health visitor-client relationship, Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, 5 (1), p.53-42
14. Clark, J. (1973) A family visitor: a descriptive analysis of health visiting in Berkshire, London: Royal College of Nursing. (RCN research series)
15. Collins, M. (2000) The practitioner new to the role of forensic psychiatric nurse in the UK. In Robinson, D. and Kettles, A. (eds.) Forensic nursing and multidisciplinary care of the mentally disordered offender, London: Jessica Kingsley, p.39-50.
16. Cullum, N., Fletcher, A., Semlyen, A., and Sheldon, T. (1997) Compression therapy for venous leg ulcers, Quality in Health Care, 6 (4), 226-231 Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1055498/pdf/qualhc00026-0050.pdf (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
17. Dale, C., Thompson, T. and Woods, P. (2001) Forensic mental health: issues in practice, Edinburgh: Bailliere Tindall/RCN
18. Darbyshire, P. (1994) Living with a sick child in hospital: the experiences of parents and nurses, London: Chapman and Hall
19. Dingwall, R., Rafferty, M. and Webster, C. (1988) An introduction to the social history of nursing, London: Routledge
20. Drennan, V., Davis, K. (2008). Trends over ten years in the primary care and community nursing workforce in England, London: Kingston University. Available at: http://www.healthcare.ac.uk/research/documents/drennan-trends-in-primary-care-and-community-nurse-workforce.pdf (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
21. Duffy, D. (1995) Out of the shadows: a study of the special observation of suicidal psychiatric inpatients Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, May, 21 (5), p.944-950.
22. Duffy, K. (2003) Failing students: a qualitative study of factors that influence the decisions regarding assessment of students’ competence in practice Glasgow : Glasgow Caledonian University. Available from: http://www.nmc-uk.org/documents/Archived%20Publications/1Research%20papers/Kathleen_Duffy_Failing_Students2003.pdf (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
23. Elkan, R., Kendrick, D., Dewey, M. (2001) Effectiveness of home based support for older people: systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ, 29 Sept, 323 (7315), p.719-725.
24. Field, D. (1984) 'We didn't want him to die on his own'- nurses' accounts of nursing dying patients Journal of Advanced Nursing, Jan, 9(1), p.59-70.
25. Glaser, B.G., Strauss, A.L. (1967) The discovery of grounded theory: strategies for qualitative research New York: Aldine de Gruyter
26. Gournay, K., Brooking, J. (1994) Community psychiatric nurses in primary health care British Journal of Psychiatry, Aug, 165(8), p.231-238.
27. Hamilton Smith, S. (1972) Nil by mouth? A descriptive study of nursing care in relation to pre-operative fasting London: Royal College of Nursing, (The study of nursing care project reports, Series 1, no. 1) Available at: http://www.rcn.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0019/235441/Series_1_Number1.pdf (accessed 30/03/10)
28. Harrisson, S. P. (1977) Families in stress: a study of the long-term medical treatment of children and parental stress, London: Royal College of Nursing. (RCN research series)
29. Hawthorn, P.J. (1974) Nurse - I want my Mummy!, London: Royal College of Nursing, (The study of nursing care project reports, Series 1, no. 3) Available at: http://www.rcn.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/235516/Series1_Number_3.pdf (accessed 30/03/10)
30. Hayward, J. (1975) Information: a prescription against pain, London: Royal College of Nursing, (The study of nursing care project reports, Series 2, no. 5) Available at:
http://www.rcn.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0007/235645/series_2_number_5.pdf (accessed 11/03/10)
31. Hockey, L. (1968) Care in the balance: a study of collaboration between hospital and community services, London: Queen’s Institute of District Nursing
32. Hockey, L. (1984) Some Aspects of Top Management in Nursing in Scotland with Emphasis on Communication, Edinburgh: Nursing Research Unit. (Unpublished report prepared for the Scottish Home and Health Department)
33. Hockey, L. (1966) Feeling the pulse: a survey of district nursing in six areas, London: Queen’s Institute of District Nursing
34. Johnson, M. (1997) Nursing power and social judgement, Aldershot: Ashgate, (Developments in nursing and health care, 16)
35. Kirshbaum, M., Booth, K., and Luker, K. (2004) The changing face of cancer care in the UK: can nurses help to structure new services?, European Journal of Cancer Care, 13 (3) Jul. p.246-253 Available at:
http://shura.shu.ac.uk/338/1/fulltext.pdf (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
36. Lawler, J. (1991) Behind the screens: nursing, somology and the problem of the body, Churchill Livingstone.
37. Lawton, J. (2000) The dying process: patients’ experiences of palliative care, London: Routledge.
38. Long, T., Sque, M. and Addington-Hall, J. H. (2008) Conflict rationalization: how family members cope with a diagnosis of brain stem death. Social Science & Medicine, February, 67(2), p.253-261.
39. Long T., Sque M. and Payne, S. (2006) Information sharing: its impact on donor and nondonor families’ experiences in the hospital. Progress in Transplantation, June, 16(2), p.144-149.
40. Luker, K.A., and Orr, J. (1985) Health visiting, Oxford: Blackwell Scientific.
41. Luker, K.A. (1982) Evaluating health visiting practice: an experimental study to evaluate the effects of focused health visitor intervention on elderly women living alone at home, London: Royal College of Nursing, (RCN research series)
42. Luker, K.A., Austin, L., Hogg, C., and Willock, J. (1997) Evaluation of nurse prescribing: final report: Vol. 1: the report, Liverpool: University of Liverpool.
43. Luker, K.A., and Chalmers, K. (1990) Gaining access to clients: the case of health visiting, Journal of Advanced Nursing, 15 (1), p.74-82 Available at:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2303617 (abstract) (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
44. Luker, K.A., and McHugh, G. (2002) Nurse prescribing from the community: nurse’s perspective. International Journal of Pharmacy Practice, 10, p.273–280.
45. Marks, I. (1985) Controlled trial of psychiatric nurse therapists in primary care. BMJ, April 20, 290 (6476), p.1181-1184.
46. McLeod-Clark, J., Maben, J. and Jones, K. (1996) Project 2000: perceptions of the philosophy and practice of nursing, London: English National Board for Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting
47. Melia, K. (1987) Learning and working: the occupational socialisation of nurses, London: Tavistock
48. Menzies, I.E.P. (1960) A case-study in the functioning of social systems as a defence against anxiety: a report of a study of the nursing service in a general hospital, Human Relations, 13 (2), p.95-121
49. Menzies, I.E.P. (1970) The functioning of social systems as a defence against anxiety: a report on a study of the nursing service of a general hospital, London: Tavistock Institute of Human Relations
50. Nightingale, F. (1863) How people may live and not die in India, London: Emily Faithfull
51. Nightingale. F. (1858) Notes on matters affecting the health, efficiency and hospital administration of the British Army: founded chiefly on the experience of the late war, London: Harrison & Sons.
52. Nightingale, F. (1859) Notes on nursing: what it is, and what it is not, London: Harrison & Sons.
53. Nightingale, F. (1863) Sanitary statistics of native colonial schools and hospitals, London: Longman
54. Nolan, M., Brown, J., Davies, S., Nolan, J., and Keady, J. (2006) The Senses Framework: improving care for older people through a relationship-centred approach, Sheffield: University of Sheffield, (GRIP-Getting research into practice (University of Sheffield) report no. 2)
55. Nolan, M., Davies, S. and Grant, G. (2001) Working with older people and their families: key issues in policy and practice, Buckingham: Open University Press
56. Norton, D., McLaren, R., and Exton-Smith, A. (1962) An investigation of geriatric nursing problems in hospital, Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone
57. Oakley, A. (1980) Women confined: towards a sociology of childbirth, Oxford: Martin Robertson
58. O’Meara, S., Cullum, N, Nelson, A. (2009). Compression for venous leg ulcers. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2009, Issue 1. Art. No.: CD000265. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD000265 pub2 Available at: http://mrw.interscience.wiley.com/cochrane/clsysrev/articles/CD000265/pdf_fs.html (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
59. Pembrey, S.E. (1980) The ward sister - key to nursing. A study of the organisation of individualised nursing, London: Royal College of Nursing, (RCN research series)
60. Quint, J.C. (1967) The nurse and the dying patient, New York, Collier-Macmillan
61. Rafferty, A., Clarke, S., Coles, J., Ball, J., James, P., McKee, M., and Aiken, L. (2007) Outcomes of variation in hospital nurse staffing in English hospitals: cross-sectional analysis of survey data and discharge records, International Journal of Nursing Studies, 44 (2) Feb. p.175-182 Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17064706 (abstract) (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
62. Rafferty, A., and Traynor, M (1997) Quality and quantity in research policy for nursing, Journal of Research in Nursing, 2 (1). p.16-27
63. Read, S. et al. (2001) Exploring new roles in practice (ENRiP): final report. Available at: http://www.academia.edu/3270447/Exploring_New_Roles_in_Practice_ENRiP_ (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
64. Smith, P. (1992) The emotional labour of nursing: its impact on the interpersonal relations, management and the educational environment in nursing, Basingstoke: Macmillan
65. Sque, M., Long, T. and Payne, S. (2008) Why relatives do not donate organs for transplants: ‘sacrifice’ or ‘gift of life’? Journal of Advanced Nursing, January, 61(2), p.134-144
66. Sque, M., Payne, S. and Vlachonikolis, I. (2000) Cadaveric donotransplantation: nurses’ attitudes, attitudes, knowledge and behaviour. Social Science & Medicine, 50 (4), p.541-552
67. Sque, M. and Payne, S. (1996) Dissonant loss: the experiences of donor relatives. Social Science & Medicine, 43(9), p.1359-1370.
68. Stockwell, F. (1972) The unpopular patient, London: Royal College of Nursing, (The study of nursing care project reports, Series 1, no. 2) Available at: http://www.rcn.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/235508/series_1_number_2.pdf (Last accessed: 04/09/14)
69. Storey, C. et al. (2007) Nurses working in primary and community care settings in England: problems and challenges in identifying numbers. Journal of Nursing Management, November, 15(8), p.847-852
70. Street, A.F. (1992) Inside nursing: a critical ethnography of nursing practice, Albany, N.Y.: State University of New York, (SUNY series, teacher empowerment and school reform)
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73. Turton, P. and Orr, J. (1993) Learning to care in the community, London: Edward Arnold (2nd edition)
74. Walsh, M. and Ford, P. (1989) Nursing rituals: research and rational actions, Oxford: Butterworth Heinemann
75. Wilkinson, S. (1991) Factors which influence how nurses communicate with cancer patients. Journal of Advanced Nursing, June, 16(3), p.677-688
76. Wilson-Barnett, J. (1979) Stress in hospital: patients' psychological reactions to illness and health care, Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone
77. Witz, A. (1992) Professions and patriarchy, London: Routledge
78. Woods, P., Reed, V. and Robinson, D. (1999) The Behavioural Status Index: therapeutic assessment of risk, insight and social skills. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, April, 6(2), p.79-90
79. Woods, P. and Richards, D. (2003) Effectiveness of nursing interventions in people with personality disorders. Journal of Advanced Nursing, October, 44(2), p.154-172.