Exploring the Meaning of Internationally Educated Nurse (IEN) Experience as Nurses Within the Canadian Health Care System

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Student: Ndolo Njie, RN, BScN, MN Candidate
Supervisor: Dr. Etowa Josephine, RN, PHD


The representation of internationally trained registered nurses (RN) in Ontario is growing. International recruitment of nurses has been influenced by predicted nursing shortages over the past decade due to an aging nursing workforce and a short supply of nursing graduates. This research examines the nursing practice of IEN within the Canadian health care system after successful completion of their RN license exams. Researches that explore the challenges IENs face within various practice settings that impact their nursing practice and effective integration are documented. Given the increasing diversity of the Canadian patient population due to rising immigration trends, an exploration of the effective integration of IENs, and how they contribute to the promotion of nursing care that reflects cultural understanding, and a welcoming environment for all patients is vital at all levels. This research will examine the value IENs bring to the Canadian health care system, its influence on patient care, and nursing work relationships.

Theoretical Framework

Using a theoretical framework antecedently for this research is impossible due to the descriptive nature of the study design and methodology.


This qualitative research will by guided by descriptive phenomenology traditions. Data collection and analysis will occur concurrently using thematic analysis of major themes from semi-structured interviews.


Knowledge generated will inform and support effective integration of IENs, and better integrative policies.