Buy this Article for $7.95

Have a coupon or promotional code? Enter it here:

When you buy this you'll get access to the ePub version, a downloadable PDF, and the ability to print the full article.


  1. Haller, Teresa MSN, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN
  2. Quatrara, Beth DNP, RN, CMSRN, ACNS-BC
  3. Miller-Davis, Claiborne MS, BSN, RN-BC
  4. Noguera, Ashley BA
  5. Pannone, Aaron PhD, MS
  6. Keim-Malpass, Jessica PhD, RN
  7. Guterbock, Thomas M. PhD
  8. Letzkus, Lisa PhD, RN, CPNP-AC


OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to explore clinical nurses' perspectives of shift length.


BACKGROUND: Discussions about scheduling practices, work rotations, and shift length are pervasive among nurses and nursing leadership. However, the science surrounding nurse perceptions of longer shifts is limited.


METHODS: A survey instrument was developed and distributed to nurses engaged in the state's professional association.


RESULTS: Data from 190 clinical nurses were included. When working a 40-hour work week, 76.3% reported a preference for 10-hour shifts, whereas 83.5% preferred a 12-hour shift during a 36-hour week. Those who chose longer shifts perceived improved work life balance and better patient care. Those identifying 8-hour shifts also pointed to work life balance as benefit.


CONCLUSIONS: The results capture the voice of the nurse regarding shift length. The preference for the 10-hour shift within the 40-hour work week is novel. These results may assist with efforts to initiate change, improve the work environment and enhance home life.