The purpose of this study is to determine the attitudes of nursing students toward the ethical problems they encounter or are witness to over the course of their clinical instruction.
Materials and Methods: The study was conducted in the nursing department of a university in west of Turkey. Carried out as descriptive research, the universe of the study comprised third-year nursing students (n=204) taking a course on "Nursing Philosophy and Ethics" during the 2015-2016 academic year. A sample was not selected for the study, as the research plan was to reach all of the students.
Results: According to the statements of the students, 41% of the ethical problems were described as ethical distress, 28% as dilemmas, and 31% as ethical uncertainties. It was found that in 46.5% of the cases, the sources of the ethical problems were predominantly nurses. When the students were asked to suggest a solution as to how they would manage the ethical problems they encountered, 83% said that they would act within the framework of ethical principles and values and in defining this, they asserted that they would "report the issue to senior management," "initiate legal action" or "report the issue to the ethics committee."
Conclusion: In keeping with results reported in the literature, the study revealed that nursing students experienced various ethical problems during their clinical training, that they were aware of these issues and displayed ethical sensitivity but that they were unable to take an active role in the process of ethical decision-making.