Date Approved


Graduate Degree Type


Degree Name

Nursing (M.S.N.)

Degree Program

College of Nursing

First Advisor

Emily Droste-Bielak

Second Advisor

Mary Horan

Third Advisor

Richard Paschke


The purpose of this study was to determine if nurses who were given a tool to facilitate assessment of thought processes would collect more assessment data, diagnose "alteration in thought processes" more frequently, and include a care plan for this diagnosis more often. A quasi-experimental pre-treatment/post-treatment design was used. An inservice program about the Level of Cognitive Function Scale (LOCF) was the treatment.; Of the 40 randomly selected subjects from the 199 adult critical care nurses at a metropolitan hospital, 20 completed the study with pre-treatment and post-treatment data. Data were collected by scoring patient assessment/care plans pre-treatment and 4 weeks post-treatment. A demographic survey and Likert scale questionnaire were used to obtain other findings of interest.; Data analysis with paired t-tests revealed a significant increase in assessment, diagnosis and care plans after instruction in the LOCF scale.


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