Learning Theories & Principles and Quality Health Care

The advanced practice nurse role is a career in which the advanced practice nurse must learn any new theories and principles and apply them to every aspect of their career. Teaching new theories and principles is the main guide for educational systems so that registered nurses and advanced practice nurses can do well when practicing to the fullest extent the career of an advanced practice nurse allows them to. By learning new theories, the advanced practice nurse can use the knowledge more effectively when applying it to different situations that might arise with different individuals (Parvin, n.d.). 

It is important for any career within the health care profession to have the regular use of theories and clear reasoning in educational activities, management, employee training, interactions with clients and patients, especially with the type of health care structure health care professionals work in (Parvin, n.d.). Theories can be classified into three different and general groups (Parvin, n.d.). The first group is behaviorism (Parvin, n.d.). The second group is cognitive (Parvin, n.d.). The third group is constructive (Parvin, n.d.).

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The theory of behaviorism is highly evident and is the most dominant approach in psychology research (Parvin, n.d.). When the 20th century first began, behaviorists who took on a more traditional role “believed that learning is a change in observable behavior and it happens when the communication occurs between the two events, a stimulus and a response (Parvin, n.d.).” Basically what this means is that learners with a behavioral reinforcement can have a positive results for a good performance (Parvin, n.d.).

The theory of cognitivism is “believing that learning is a targeted internal process and focus on thinking, understanding, organizing, and consciousness (Parvin, n.d.).“ Cognitive learning theory cannot be observed  directly due to the fact that it is associated with a change in capacity and capability of the individual themself (Parvin, n.d.). Fundamentalists believe that cognitive theories can help students be equipped to questioning skill and problem solving through the exploration and information process (Parvin, n.d.).

The constructive theory has to do with the “objective reality of the outside world transferred from the learner (Parvin, n.d.).” The educational approach must be emphasized on the activity of the learner during the construction of knowledge (Parvin, n.d.).”  When it comes to nursing, this theory can be useful in allowing learners to actively participate in discussions and figure out the best approach (Parvin, n.d.). Doing things like creating a group discussion and and having a person as a coordinator in these types of theory sessions, even while at a patient’s bedside can help to sharpen, shape, and strengthen the cooperation between several individuals (Parvin, n.d.).

I believe that an advanced practice nurse should take all of these into consideration when doing things within their scope of practice. These learning theories and practices that come along with them allows advanced practice nurses to adapt to demands and circumstances that are crucial in health care (Braungart, Gramet, n.d.).


Aliakbari, F., Parvin, N., Heidari, M., & Haghani, F. (n.d.). Learning theories application in nursing education. Retrieved November 03, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4355834/ (Links to an external site.)

Braungart, & Gramet. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://samples.jbpub.com/9781284104448/Sample_CH03_Bastable.pdf

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