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|Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport Journal Articles
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|Intuition and expertise: Comments on the Benner debate
|Intensive care nursing
Nursing Decision making
|Paley J (1996) Intuition and expertise: Comments on the Benner debate. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 23 (4), pp. 665-671. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2648.1996.tb00035.x
|The rift between 'science' and 'phenomenology' in current nursing theory is explored through an examination of two recent evaluations of the work of Patricia Benner, who has proposed a model of skill acquisition, latterly within a Heideggerian framework. English offers a critique of Benner's ideas from the perspective of cognitive psychology; while Darbyshire defends them against what he describes as a 'positivist' attack. No attempt is made, in this paper, to evaluate Benner's work directly, but Darbyshire's response to the 'critique' is analysed; and it is noted that, in making his defence, he invokes a network of concepts which he ascribes to a 'traditional notion of objective science', and accuses English of subscribing to it. It is suggested that this 'Cartesian' worldview is an outmoded myth, superseded by the philosophy of science during the last 30 years, and based on the rhetoric rather than the reality of scientific practice, Nursing is not, therefore, obliged to choose between 'positivism' and a philosophy whose chief virtue is that it represents a 'challenge' to positivism. It could instead build a scientific basis for research and theory by drawing, not on mid-century thinking, but on a more contemporary understanding of the nature of science.
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