ArticlePDF Available

The impostor phenomenon in new nurse practitioner graduates

Authors:
  • Texas Board of Nursing
... In professions where one sex is predominating, individuals of the opposite sex are more likely to demonstrate imposter behaviors (Harvey & Katz, 1985). IP has been documented across the professions in a variety of industries including K-12 education, health care, accountancy, finance, law, marketing, and higher education (Arena & Page, 1992;Byrnes & Lester, 1995;Clance & Imes, 1978;Crouch, Powell, Grant, Posner-Cahill & Rose, 1991;Fried-Buchalter, 1997;Huffstutler & Varnell, 2006;Mattie, Gietzen, Davis & Prata, 2008;Parkman & Beard, 2008;Zorn, 2005). ...
... At the undergraduate level, IP has been documented across a variety of majors and disciplines to include psychology (Ferrari & Thompson, 2006), engineering (Felder, 1988), medical, dental, nursing and pharmacy students (Henning, Ey & Shaw, 1998). Publications discussing IP at the graduate level can be found regarding students in physician assistant studies (Mattie, Gietzen, Davis & Prata, 2008;Prata & Gietzen, 2007), psychology (Bernard, Dollinger & Ramaniah, 2002;Castro, Jones, & Mirasalimi, 2004;Gibson-Beverly & Schwartz, 2008) nurse practitioner (Huffstutler & Varnell, 2006;Sutliff, 1998;Vance, 2002), medical residency (Legassi, Zibrowski, & Goldszmdt, 2008;Oriel, Plane & Mundt, 2004), molecular biology (Pinker, 2009), and in doctoral programs (Gibson-Beverly & Schwartz, 2008;Long, Jenkins & Bracken, 2000). As Junia Mason (2009) describes it, "As a doctoral student in education, there are times when I feel as if I am living in the uncomfortable skin of someone who is seeking validation for the right to grace the halls of academia" (p.17). ...
... It has been suggested that enhancement of perception of workplace social support can ease some of the impact of Impostorism (Vergauwe et al., 2014). Other recommendations have included the implementation of multifaceted structured feedback systems (Cogner & Fulmer, 2004), careful selection of mentors (Huffstutler & Varnell, 2006;Leung, 2006) and clearly designed expectations with organizationally appropriate boundaries (Crumpacker & Crumpacker, 2007;Hutchins, 2015;Kets de Vries, 2005;Vergauwe et al., 2014). ...
Full-text available
Article
Clance (1978) first identified the Impostor Phenomenon in therapeutic sessions with highly successful women who attributed achievements to external factors even in the presence of evidence to the contrary. These individuals, believing themselves unworthy of promotions, recognition and rewards, saw themselves as frauds. Those dealing with impostor tendencies put a considerable amount of pressure on themselves to maintain the façade and as such are known to exhibit high levels of perfectionism and workaholic behaviors. This article reviews the definition and traits associated with the Impostor Phenomenon with a focus on incidence and impact in higher education.
... A compreensão das transições de papel dos EPAs pode ser usada para avançar no desenvolvimento de 'bases de suporte', como redes de mentoria e de apoio, com o objetivo de garantir uma passagem leve de enfermeiro para EPA 11 . A suposição é que uma melhor conscientização do processo de transição levará a uma maior compreensão e a um período de ajuste mais curto 5,7,19 . No entanto, a conscientização precede o engajamento. ...
... Literature exists related to the imposter syndrome as it applies to individuals in particular fields and the influence the phenomenon has within those particular fields. Imposter syndrome has been documented across the professions in a variety of industries including K-12 education, health care, accounting, finance, law, marketing, and higher education in particular fields, such as medical education and engineering education (Arena & Page, 1992;Byrnes & Lester, 1995;Clance & Imes, 1978;Crouch et al., 1991;Huffstutler & Varnell, 2006;Mattie et al., 2008;Parkman & Beard, 2009;Zorn, 2005). ...
Article
This study explored the experiences of women leaders who graduated from a student affairs master’s degree program, and advanced to positions of vertical movement to roles of increasing responsibility, wider influence, and greater accountability. Specifically, exploration of this progression, and the influences on their experience of lateral movement, including the impostor’s syndrome. Three themes emerged from this study: (a) the influence of relationships on career progression, (b) navigating the structures of higher education, and (c) experiences of the Imposter Phenomenon. The results of this study can support student affairs preparation programs as they determine the competencies necessary to prepare professionals for navigating a career of progressive leadership and influence in higher education. Additionally, the results of this study can help university administration as they support student affairs professionals. Finally, the results of this study provide considerations for women as they consider carees in higher education. Considerations for organizational structures, succession planning, peer support channels and how to best support that important population on college campuses. Future research opportunities are also discussed as they relate to understanding progression experiences of student affairs professionals. Advisor: Marilyn Grady, Ph.D.
... At the undergraduate level, IS has been documented across a variety of majors and disciplines to include psychology (Ferrari & Thompson, 2006), engineering (Felder, 1988), medical, dental, nursing and pharmacy students (Henning, Ey & Shaw, 1998). Publications discussing IS determined that graduate and doctoral students (Long, Jenkins & Bracken, 2000) in the following majors were more likely to experience IS: physician assistant studies (Mattie, Gietzen, Davis & Prata, 2008), psychology (Bernard, Dollinger & Ramaniah, 2002;Castro, Jones, & Mirasalimi, 2004;Gibson-Beverly & Schwartz, 2008) nurse practitioner (Huffstutler & Varnell, 2006;Sutliff, 1998;Vance, 2002), medical residency (Legassi, Zibrowski, & Goldszmdt, 2008;Oriel, Plane & Mundt, 2004), molecular biology (Pinker, 2009). ...
Article
Members of minority populations are forced to hide behind a mask of stereotypes others associate to them. Individuals who feel fraudulent when they fulfill certain stereotypes, associate their success to external forces, define the problem as impostor syndrome (IS). The paper focuses on the prevalence and relevance of IS on college campuses. The session will explore the affect and effect of IS from different cultural lenses and discuss possible preventive and coping strategies for academic and mental health professionals. The purpose is to 'unmask' the impostor syndrome caused by stereotypes and stereotype threats that prevents individuals from reaching 'new heights' and compromise their existing talents.
... Concerning how faculty coped with the specific imposter incidents, our findings definitively support extant work around the importance of informal and formal learning and development methods to address imposter experiences (Carver, Scheier, and Weintraub 1989;Clark et al. 2012;Huffstutler and Varnell 2006;Watson and Betts 2010). These include seeking job feedback from department chairs or mentors and in gaining support from more informal sources such as from colleagues and peers (Hill 2004;Iqbal and Kokash 2011;Narayanan, Menon, and Spector 1999). ...
Full-text available
Article
Despite research on imposter phenomenon among graduate students, few researchers have explored how academic faculty copes with the psychological stress resulting from questioning their professional legitimacy and expertise. We examined the predicating events that trigger imposter tendencies among academic faculty, their applied coping skills at mitigating such experiences and types of institutional resources that could support faculty struggling with imposter phenomenon. We position our study within identity theory and suggest that the emergence of imposter phenomenon could be a formative part of how faculty form their professional identity. Using critical incident technique (CIT) to analyse faculty narratives (n = 16), we identified four specific incidents that triggered faculty imposter experiences, four distinct coping methods used to interrupt the imposter cycle, and perceived needs and resources around institutional support. We also identified gender differences in incidents and coping responses. Specific suggestions are offered for formal and informal learning interventions in dealing with faculty imposter phenomenon as it relates to work outcomes.
Full-text available
Article
Perfectionism refers to a tendency to set unrealistically high standards for oneself and others. Although often seen positively, perfectionism can threaten health, relationships and performance. This study examined the effects of three types of maladaptive perfectionism on burnout in 294 UK social workers: self-oriented (having excessively high standards for oneself), other-oriented (having excessively high expectations of others) and socially prescribed (perceiving external pressure to excel). In line with previous research, we predicted that socially prescribed perfectionism would have particularly powerful effects on well-being, but significant relationships with self and other-oriented perfectionism were also expected. We also examined whether maladaptive perfectionism intensified the negative impact of work-related emotional demands on burnout. Significant positive relationships were found between socially prescribed and other-oriented perfectionism and burnout. A higher level of socially prescribed perfectionism was found than self and other-oriented and its relationship with burnout was particularly strong. We found no evidence, however, that perfectionism was an additional risk factor for burnout when emotional demands were high. Early career social workers were found to be at greater risk of dysfunctional perfectionism and burnout. The implications of the findings for the well-being of social workers are considered and potential interventions outlined to reduce maladaptive perfectionism.
Full-text available
Article
Impostor phenomenon (IP) refers to an overwhelming feeling of intellectual fraudulence and affects individuals across a number of fields. Academia provides an environment in which these feelings can flourish, particularly within postgraduate students. In spite of the research exploring these feelings, we know little about how to reduce them in academia. Clinical research has identified guiding principles to assist those affected, particularly through mentorship. This article describes a series of interventions for postgraduates adapted from clinical research. These four interventions identified IP and its consequences, explored disciplinary and academic literacies strategies, and taught postgraduate students how to read academic journal articles and use literacy strategies to write literature reviews. Parametric and nonparametric analyses show that impostor feelings reduced by 23% relative to a control group. This research suggests that programmes could use similar interventions in academic skill sets to help reduce IP feelings in their postgraduate students.
Full-text available
Article
The transition shock sometimes associated with moving from student to registered nurse can lead to feelings of self-doubt and insecurity especially with the increased expectations and responsibilities that registration brings. Known as Imposter Phenomena, individuals often express a lack of self-confidence, uncertainty in their abilities or that others have an over inflated opinion of them. Aim: The aim of this study is to examine the extent at which imposter phenomenon is evident in four final year nursing student cohorts in Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Design: A survey design. Settings: The study took place at 4 higher education institutes – two metropolitan campuses and two regional campuses between October 2014 and February 2015 in Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. A sample of 223 final year nursing students undertaking nationally accredited nursing programmes were approached. Results: Each cohort exhibited mild to moderate feelings of Imposter Phenomena. A positive weak correlation between imposter phenomena and preparedness for practice was found. The New Zealand cohort scored higher than both the Australian and United Kingdom cohorts on both feelings of imposterism and preparedness for practice. Conclusions: Nursing students possess internalised feelings which suggest their performance and competence once qualified could be compromised. There is some speculation that the respective curriculums may have some bearing on preparing students for registration and beyond. It is recommended that educational programmes designed for this student cohort should be mindful of this internal conflict and potential external hostility.
Article
The Institute of Medicine recommended the implementation of nurse practitioner transition-to-practice programs, either called residency or fellowship, for new graduates. These programs are rapidly expanding on the national level in a variety of practice areas. However, there is a lack of literature on the effectiveness of these programs. The Veterans Affairs Centers of Excellence in Primary Care Education developed a competency-based assessment tool to measure program effectiveness, document the achievement of competency, and promote standardization. This article describes the development of the tool along with curricular examples to promote nurse practitioner transition to practice.
Full-text available
Article
Attention to faculty development, especially factors influencing faculty satisfaction and performance, has increased in the last decade. While a significant focus has been on contextual factors (i.e., tenure policies, mentoring, work-life integration), fewer studies have examined individual psychological factors especially in the field of human resource development. This descriptive study addresses a particular focus in faculty development by examining the prevalence of faculty experiences of imposter phenomenon, IP, (the experience of fraudulent thoughts and feelings and the inability to attribute and internalize personal achievement), how it affects their perceived emotional exhaustion (a dimension of job burnout) and their reported coping skills. Results of the study suggest that faculty (n=61) do experience moderate levels of IP with the highest reported by untenured faculty. Results also indicate that faculty emotional exhaustion is positively related to IP, and faculty reporting moderate-high levels of IP also reported greater use of adaptive coping skills to address imposter thoughts. Faculty also identified the important role of mentoring at tempering imposter tendencies.
ResearchGate has not been able to resolve any references for this publication.