Date of Graduation

Summer 8-11-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)


School of Nursing and Health Professions




Executive Leader DNP

First Advisor

Dr. Lisa Cowan

Second Advisor

Dr. KT Waxman

Third Advisor

Dr. Jerry Spicer


Empathy, kindness, and compassion are some of the humanistic values essential to nursing practice particularly in today’s patient and family-centric healthcare environment. A genuinely empathetic and caring relationship between a nurse and a patient not only enhances the quality and safety of care but also contributes to patient satisfaction, compliance to treatment, and overall health outcomes. Debate amongst educators and researchers continues to grow as to whether these uniquely humanistic values are innate or if they can be taught. How do nurses acquire the knowledge, skills, and attitudes towards the delivery of compassionate patient care? What strategies are best suited to cultivate and sustain a competent and compassionate nursing workforce? This evidence-based quality improvement project is built on existing findings from Simulation-Based Education (SBE), as an effective pedagogy, to enhance professional nursing practice. A smartphone mobile education application (app) was developed, implemented, and evaluated for a cohort of newly graduated registered nurses to improve their transition to practice experiences in a nurse residency program at a large integrated healthcare system in Southern California. By incorporating the science of caring, experiential learning, mindfulness practice, self-reflection, and peer-to-peer feedback, through the use of a state-of-the-art mobile app, into an existing simulation-based nurse residency program, participants reported an increase in clinical competency, communication skills, reflective practice, and self-compassion.