How to Choose a Topic for Your Nursing Paper

It is inevitable that during nursing school, you will be required to write a number of research papers. Sometimes it can be challenging to come up with the topics for these papers when your professors donΓÇÖt assign specific subject matter to you. When writing a nursing paper using the APA format, there are a few different approaches to this process you can consider.

One approach is to select a topic in which you are well-versed. You can flesh out what you already know, then research and add some new details that will enhance your understanding of the topic. A second approach is to select an aspect of nursing that perhaps you are not as well-versed in, but would like to learn more about. In doing so, you will expand your knowledge base and ultimately make yourself more valuable as a nurse.

If you are stuck, you can apply these approaches to five possible topic areas for a nursing paper:

1. Patient Care Techniques
The primary responsibility of the nursing professional is to tend to the needs of the patients under their care. This includes both emotional as well as physical needs. There are quite a few patient care styles and techniques that you could explore, compare and contrast within your research paper.

2. Coping Procedures for Nurses
At times, providing nursing care can be emotionally draining. Being faced with illness and death on a regular basis can be taxing for many health care professionals. Your paper could focus on the most effective ways nurses can deal with stress in the workplace.

3. Technology in Nursing Education
Advances in technology have changed the way nurses are educated. These days, nurses are able to put what they’ve learned into practice on highly realistic computerized and/or robotic simulator devices. In your paper, you could discuss the latest innovations in nursing education technology and explore in detail how these advances benefit the educational process.

4. The Patient-Nurse Relationship
One of the crucial ingredients of a successful patient-nurse relationship is building a sense of trust. The nurse, as a patient advocate, should strive to develop an “interdependent” relationship — not dependent, but not clinically detached either. The ideal patient-nurse relationship is both caring and empowering to the patient, promoting both a sense of dignity as well as aiding accelerated healing. With this topic for your nursing paper, you could explore some of the best ways to connect with patients in ways that are most conducive to health and healing.

5. The Future of Nursing
As the demand for qualified nurses grows, the field of nursing continues to change and evolve at a rapid pace. Advances in technology and practices are improving the ability for nurses to administer care, yet in some ways they make nursing care more complex. Your paper could explore the latest innovations in nursing as well as discuss where the nursing field is headed.

To make the writing process easier for your nursing paper, ideally, your topic should be one that you are passionate about. Your connection to your topic will show, and the writing of your paper will flow quite naturally. Your final result will have a feeling of authenticity.

However, one area of complexity associated with writing your paper is applying the APA format accurately. If, like many other students, you struggle with this, consider looking into formatting software. It is a tool that will help you adhere to the APA format, allowing you to put more of your focus on writing the very best quality nursing paper possible

David Plaut is the founder of Reference Point Software (RPS). RPS offers a complete suite of easy-to-use formatting template products featuring MLA and APA style templates, freeing up time to focus on substance while ensuring formatting accuracy. For more information, log onto or write to:
info @

Reference Point Software is not associated with, endorsed by, or affiliated with the American Psychological Association (APA) or with the Modern Language Association (MLA).

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