Roehrs, Carol Joy

Committee Member

Clukey, Lorey

Committee Member

Henry, Melissa L.


Nursing Education


University of Northern Colorado

Type of Resources


Place of Publication

Greeley (Colo.)


University of Northern Colorado

Date Created





155 pages

Digital Origin

Born digital


The topic of nurse educator life balance is significant to the nurse educator community, which is facing a national nurse faculty shortage, challenges in producing enough new nurses, and a continuing shortage of nurses. This compromises patient safety and the quality of care. Major factors identified as contributing to the shortage of nurse educators are educator dissatisfaction with workload and work life balance. Life balance is described as an enjoyable array of daily activities that is meaningful and contributes to the individual’s health. Professional quality of life is described as the quality one feels in relation to one’s work as a helper and may be related to life balance in the nurse educator role. This mixed methods study used a sample of 32 nurse educators from Washington state to examine relationships that exist between nurse educator life balance as measured by the life balance inventory, and professional quality of life related to work as measured by the ProQOL 5 tool. The study also explored the lived experience of life balance phenomena through interviews with 12 nurse educators. The findings illustrate that the nurse educator participants reported moderate life balance, and that the more life balance an educator perceives they have, the more compassion satisfaction they may perceive they have. There were significant positive correlations between compassion satisfaction and the total life balance score and subcategories health, challenge, and identity. There were significant negative correlations in the expected directions between all of the life balance scores (total life balance and the subcategories health, relationships, challenge, and identity) and burnout. There are also strong negative relationships between the total life balance scores and the three subcategories of health, challenge, and identity. The four themes that emerged in the interviews highlighted areas of concern for nurse educators: 1) Support 2) Demands 3) Workload 4) Personal and Time attributes. The reports of the dissatisfaction with life balance or lack of life balance in the literature may be more an indicator of the educator's dissatisfaction with work related factors, not necessarily related to actual life balance. The findings of the study add to the existing literature by confirming dissatisfaction with the role of nurse educator for the study participants, but do not confirm the high rates burnout. Limitations of the study include the generalizability of a mixed methods study, the self-selection aspect of the sampling, and the sample size. Future research aimed at nurse educator expectations and traits of successful nurse educators may provide additional information to help address the nurse and nurse educator shortage.

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