Vaping Education in Baccalaureate Nursing Curriculum and Effects on Practice: A Cross-Sectional Exploratory Study

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date



Background: Vaping has become increasingly more prevalent, and nurses need to understand the risks, assess health effects, and provide education on vaping cessation and avoidance.

Objective: The purpose of the study was to evaluate nursing students' vaping behaviors and knowledge as well as the extent that vaping education is integrated into curriculum and clinical practice.

Design: A cross-sectional exploratory study.

Setting/participants: Baccalaureate nursing students from across the United States.

Methods: Questionnaires were electronically delivered to nursing programs for distribution. The questionnaire assessed vaping behaviors, knowledge of health risks related to vaping and smoking, the extent to which participants integrated vaping education into their clinical practice, and vaping education in nursing curriculum. Pearson correlations and t-tests were performed to assess the relationships and differences between the variables.

Results: The prevalence of vaping in US nursing students identified in this study exceeds most of the previous studies in this area. In the states represented, programs were more likely to teach smoking content than vaping. If vaping was part of the curriculum, most programs were more likely to teach vaping through informal class discussion versus within the formal curriculum. Correlations were noted between knowledge of vaping health outcomes and clinical practice behaviors of students. Overall, there was a correlation between comfort assessing/discussing vaping in the clinical setting and the presence of vaping curriculum, however the correlation was stronger when taught as part of the formal curriculum rather than through informal discussion.

Conclusions: While vaping is rapidly increasing in use, students were less likely to include vaping into their clinical practice if they lack knowledge of the effects. When formal curriculum is in place, students were more likely to include vaping assessment and education into clinical practice. Including vaping content within the formal curriculum is a warranted approach to address this growing crisis.


At the time this article was written and researched, Julia Saglimbeni was a student in the B.S. nursing program at Sacred Heart University.






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