Massachusetts Nursing Profession Entrants Survey, 1988 (ICPSR 9520)

Principal Investigator(s): Lerner, Debra J.


The purpose of this survey was to gather information to assist educators, administrators, and policymakers in the development of strategies for the recruitment and retention of registered nurses. To that end, nurses taking the Massachusetts licensure exam were queried about their reasons for going into nursing, their nursing career goals, their attitudes toward the nursing profession, their preferences for various branches of the nursing profession, and the importance they placed on various aspects of work in general, e.g., job security, high income, and good opportunities for advancement. Respondents were also questioned about their job searches and their current or impending jobs: how the job was found, number of applications filled out and offers received, number of hours usually worked, earnings, type of medical facility, shift usually worked and preferred, commuting distances, public transportation and child care needs, whether student clinical experience was obtained with the employer, planned length of stay at the job, and the importance of various factors that attracted them to the position, such as the attractiveness of the town or city where the job was located, salary and benefit levels, availability of parking and child care, and job flexibility. In addition, the survey asked respondents how and when they decided to become nurses, how they found out about educational options in nursing, how much basic nursing education they received and how it was financed, which factors attracted them to the schools from which they graduated, and how much of their basic nursing education was devoted to clinical experience. Background information on respondents includes age, sex, citizenship, race, ethnic group, marital status, education, education goals, family income, number and ages of related persons living in the household, usage of child care and elderly care services, parents' education and occupations, and mother's employment status at various stages of the respondent's childhood and adolescence.

Access Notes

  • One or more files in this data collection have special restrictions ; consult the restrictions note to learn more. You can apply online for access to the restricted-use data. A login is required to apply.

    As explained in the ICPSR Processing Note in the codebook, some variables are restricted from general dissemination for reasons of confidentiality. Users interested in obtaining these data must complete an Agreement for the Use of Confidential Data, specify the reasons for the request, and obtain IRB approval or notice of exemption for their research. Apply for access to these data through the ICPSR restricted data contract portal, which can be accessed via the <a href="">study home page</a>.

    Any public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.


DS1:  Data File - Download All Files (1.871 MB)
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DS2:  SAS Data Definition Statements - Download All Files (0.091 MB)

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DS3:  Frequencies File
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DS4:  Data Collection Instrument
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Study Description


Lerner, Debra J. Massachusetts Nursing Profession Entrants Survey, 1988. ICPSR09520-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 1995.

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This study was funded by:

  • Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (14279)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    career choice, career expectations, career goals, child care, commuting (travel), education, education costs, educational background, educational planning, income, job satisfaction, job security, nurses, professional development, public transportation, work attitudes, work environment, working hours

Geographic Coverage:    United States

Time Period:   

  • 1988-07

Date of Collection:   

  • 1988-07

Universe:    All registered nurses applying for Massachusetts licensure in July 1988.

Data Type(s):    survey data


Data Source:

self-administered questionnaires


Original ICPSR Release:   1995-12-20

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