The Evaluation of Nursing Coursework for Biased Content at a Midwestern University College of Nursing



12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

Recent egregious acts of social injustice have fueled intense interest in continuing the work of deconstructing structural bias and reforming institutions to be inclusive of diversity to facilitate social change (Lowery, 2020; Warren, 2020). Bias-free content in healthcare education allows students to evaluate patients free from labels, ultimately impacting patient outcomes as labeling is no longer seen as a replacement for genetic analysis or class, culture, or physical assessment (Ripp & Braun, 2017; Tsai et al., 2016). To date, there is no published data on a systematic review of coursework for biased content in nursing curricula. The purpose of the project was to evaluate one course within a Midwestern University CON master’s level program for the presence of biased content, detailing the process of evaluation to provide data to stakeholders for planning a structure to facilitate faculty course evaluations. A useful tool, six process steps, and four ways to address bias were identified to perform a successful evaluation of coursework for biased content.

Presentation Objectives:

  1. Identify the tools available to facilitate faculty course evaluations for biased content.
  2. Detail the process and results of a systematic review of one 15-week, 3 credit, pre-licensure graduate nursing course.
  3. Present faculty feedback that includes both support and trepidation about the process of evaluating coursework for biased content.
  4. Distinguish between the 4 ways to address biased content identified in coursework.


About Sarah J. Jennings DNP, MPA, RN, NEA-BC:

Ms. Jennings attained a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing in 1999, and immediately began work at a large teaching facility on an inpatient Women’s Health unit.  Over the next seventeen years, she continued to work in women’s health care in a variety of settings ranging from rural to inner city communities, office to OR, and from small community hospitals to large teaching facilities.  In 2013, she obtained a management position as a Clinical Supervisor of the Women and Children’s Services Unit in State College, PA; incidentally home to Penn State University (Go Lions!).  Ms. Jennings then attained a Master’s Degree in Public Administration to continue growth in leadership and nursing.  Following graduation, she was given the opportunity to teach at Northern Michigan University, and has really enjoyed the chance to be a part of molding tomorrow’s work force. With a new-found interest in teaching nursing, she pursued a terminal degree. Jennings graduated with her Doctorate in Nursing Practice with a focus on Transformational Leadership and Systems Management from Rush University on August 28, 2021. The content in this presentation is a result of her work at Rush University, a leader in addressing diversity, equity, and inclusion in healthcare education.