R. Louise McManus and Mildred Montag Create the Associate Degree Model for the Education of Nurses: The Right Leaders, The Right Time, The Right Place: 1947 to 1959
By: Annemarie McAllister
Published: 05/16/2012
Uploaded: 11/17/2017
Uploaded by: Pocket Masters
Pockets: 2012 (May) Teachers College Columbia University Ed.D. Dissertations, Gottesman Libraries Archive, Historical Dissertations
Tags: associate degree, Education, McManus, montag, Nursing, Teachers College

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Description/Abstract: The development of the Associate Degree model for the education of nurses (ADN) in the United States is a significant milestone for the nursing profession. The purpose of this historical study was to examine how nurse leaders developed the model in the 1950s and to explore the contextual factors that fueled the growth of the model. Emphasis was placed on the activities of the two nurse leaders, R. Louise McManus and Mildred Montag, who were largely responsible for both the development and the implementation of what became the most common route to entry into the profession of nursing. The timeframe begins in 1947 when McManus took the helm of the Department of Nursing Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, then what many considered the premier graduate school for nurses in the country. It ended in 1959 when Montag published the results of the Cooperative Research Project, which showed that ADN nurses performed as well or better than traditionally trained nurses. The success of the ADN has become the most divisive issue for the nursing profession, as more than 60% of the profession is educated at this level and there are repeated calls to require the baccalaureate degree as the minimum requirement for entry into practice.

Primary and secondary sources that were used were reports, meeting minutes, letters, and audio interviews of people involved with the development of the ADN model. Archival materials were accessed and oral histories were obtained.

This dissertation examines McManus's and Montag's roles in the development of the ADN. The larger world stage, the distinct milieu at TC, and the foresight and focus of these two nurse leaders created a perfect storm of events that ushered the nursing profession into the system of higher education in America. This historical study, considered in light of today's issues, enables us to see how the progression in nursing education evolved and provides insight into future possibilities