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  1. Schoessler, Mary EdD, RN
  2. Akin, Rita RN
  3. Boyd, Ruth BSN, RN, CDE
  4. Falconer, Kim RN
  5. Kaiel, Colleen BSN, RN
  6. Moore-Stout, Donna-Lee RN, CCRN
  7. Payne, Raushanah BSN, RN
  8. Sajko, Collette BSN, RN
  9. Sawyer, Leslie RN


The purpose of this study was to evaluate descriptors of practice designed to help nurses and managers assist the nurse along the advanced beginner to expert continuum. This study was part of a larger action research program integrating a registered nurse (RN) performance appraisal and clinical ladder. Informants selected descriptors corresponding to their routine practice from randomized lists in each nursing domain. Analysis demonstrated distinctive selection patterns in proficient and expert nurses in all but one domain. Findings supported the use of descriptors in locating an individual on the developmental continuum.