Master's Theses



Degree Name

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)


In today's healthcare providing an atmosphere that facilitates nurses to be empowered and satisfied with their job is a challenge for hospitals and nursing administrators. The nursing environment provides the elements necessary for nurses to perform nursing actions and feel a sense of accomplishment in their ability to perform their jobs. Some nurses are leaving the profession of nursing because they lack empowerment and have become dissatisfied with their jobs. Nursing empowerment and job satisfaction are concepts that are not well understood in nursing literature. Nursing empowerment has been studied extensively in the literature. A lack of feeling empowered has been measured by job stress, Burnout, and decreased productivity. Empowerment occurs when the elements in the nursing work environment enable nurses to do their job. Nurses have some control over their work environment when the nurse has information, resources, support, and opportunity to complete one's job activities according to Kanter (1993), and Laschinger, Finegan, Shamian, and Almost (2001). Job satisfaction is associated with the work environment and is a subjective opinion by the individual (Price, 2000). Job satisfaction is the extent to which employees like their work. Kanter's theory of structural power formed a conceptual model to guide this investigation. Five assumptions support Kanter's (1993) theory. The main concepts of Kanter's theory are information, resources, opportunity, support and their relationship to formal and informal power. An environment that provides adequate information, access to resources, opportunity for advancement, and support to accomplish the job, provides an atmosphere that is conducive to empowerment. Staff who are empowered may have a greater tendency for job satisfaction because their needs to do the job are met. The findings indicated that there was a significant positive correlation between nurse empowerment and job satisfaction. The Conditions of Work Effectiveness Questionnaire-II was used to measure formal and informal power, access to information, resources opportunity, support and overall empowerment in the nursing work environment. Two rural Kansas hospitals participated in this investigation. For the purpose of this investigation, nurse empowerment was measured in the work environment to evaluate the relationship between empowerment and job satisfaction. The relationship between nurse empowerment and job satisfaction was explored using a quantitative, non-experimental descriptive research design. A convenience sample of 100 nurses who practice in rural community hospital settings was obtained from two western Kansas hospitals. Results were correlated with the total scores of the CWEQ-II and the JSS. The results of the analysis suggest that there is a significant level of correlation between the concepts nurse empowerment and job satisfaction. No significant correlation was found between years worked in nursing and empowerment.


Dr. Liane Connelly

Date of Award

Spring 2005

Document Type

Thesis - campus only access


© 2005 Dee Ann Rundell


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