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  1. Karkos, Brenda MSN/MBA, RN, OCN
  2. Peters, Karen MSN, RN, BC


Objective: To identify the barriers to research utilization for nurses within a Magnet community hospital.


Design: A descriptive, quantitative design was used.


Methods: The instrument used was the BARRIERS scale, a 29-item Likert-type questionnaire, regarding perceived obstacles to research utilization. It included 3 open-ended questions. In all, 584 packets containing the BARRIERS tool and a demographic survey were successfully distributed. A total of 275 (47%) completed questionnaires were returned.


Results: The questions were categorized into 4 domains: Nurse, Setting, Research, and Presentation. The Setting domain was found to be the greatest barrier for nurses. Four of the top 5 barriers related to the Setting. Facilitators to implementing research fell within 4 distinct themes: access and availability, education and communication, practical application, and supportive environment. A statistically significant difference was found in the Nurse domain based on the education level (F = 2.932) (P = .034).


Conclusions: The results of this study will be useful in determining strategies for improving the nurse practice setting to facilitate the use of research by nurses. Suggested changes should encourage the reading of research; discussion of research; risk taking to implement new ideas; mentoring; and education of nursing staff, hospital administration, and physicians. Implementation of the Magnet standards is likely to diminish the barriers to research use by nurses within that facility.