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Home : Media
Rachael McLaughlin, Director
Marketing and Communications
Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International
Addressing The Nurse’s Reality Gap
New publication from STTI targets nurse educators’ role in training and retention
INDIANAPOLIS — The Department of Professional employees recently reported that 18 to 20 percent of registered nurses in the U.S. are not practicing in their profession. And according to the Journal of Professional Nursing, those who start in the profession will work an average of 6.4 years as registered nurses.
While many registered nurses cite limited staffing, long working hours, and higher wages as reasons for seeking employment elsewhere, one professor and board-certified family nurse practitioner suggests the problem may stem from a broader source: The classroom.
In The Nurse’s Reality Gap: Overcoming Barriers Between Academic Achievement and Clinical Success, published by the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI), Leslie Neal-Boylan, PhD, CRRN, APRN-BC, FNP, directly addresses the gap between academe and clinical practice. Including firsthand accounts from new graduates, Dr. Neal-Boylan offers practical strategies for nurse educators to help their students successfully navigate the transitional period from classroom to bedside in an attempt to better prepare them for the realities of the profession – and, in turn, help retain nurses in the field.
While several books in the market are geared toward new nurses, The Nurse’s Reality Gap is the first to address the issue of decreasing retention in the clinical setting and the first to speak directly to nurse educators to fix the problem.
“This book addresses our critical issues in nursing education or, one might say, the ghosts in the closet,” said Anita Finkelman, MSN, RN, visiting faculty at Northeastern University’s Bouvé College of Health Science and School of Nursing. “We need more dialogue about our problems and issues so that we can better improve student competencies and enhance patient care, a highly critical need in the health care system. Read this book and you will have a vibrant dialogue with a colleague, examining our needs and wrestling with solutions.”
Purchase the book at
The Nurse’s Reality Gap: Overcoming Barriers Between Academic Achievement and Clinical Success
By Leslie Neal-Boylan, PhD, CRRN, APRN-BC, FNP
Published by the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI)
ISBN-13: 9781-937554-46-0
Price: US $34.95
Trade paperback, 172 pages
Trim size: 6 X 9
About the author
Leslie Neal-Boylan, PhD, CRRN, APRN-BC, FNP, is associate dean and professor at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Conn. She earned her BSN from Rutgers University, her MSN from San Jose State University, and her PhD in nursing from George Mason University. She received a post-master’s certificate as a family nurse practitioner from Marymount University in Arlington, Va. She is a board-certified family nurse practitioner and is also certified in rehabilitation nursing, home health nursing, and rheumatology. She works at Care Medical Family Practice and Internal Medicine in her FNP role. Dr. Neal-Boylan has more than 30 years of direct clinical experience and 15 years in nursing education. She has held various leadership positions in nursing and has authored and/or edited almost 100 peer-reviewed publications, including seven books. Dr. Neal-Boylan’s research focus has been on the nursing workforce, including areas such as registered nurses with disabilities, retired volunteer nurses, geriatric patient care, the nurse practitioner role, and chronic illness.
The Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is advancing world health and celebrating nursing excellence in scholarship, leadership, and service. Founded in 1922, STTI has more than 135,000 active members in more than 85 countries. Members include practicing nurses, instructors, researchers, policymakers, entrepreneurs and others. STTI’s roughly 500 chapters are located at approximately 695 institutions of higher education throughout Armenia, Australia, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, England, Ghana, Hong Kong, Japan, Kenya, Lebanon, Malawi, Mexico, the Netherlands, Pakistan, Portugal, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Swaziland, Sweden, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, the United States, and Wales. More information about STTI can be found online at
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