DeAnna Gapp

Date Approved


Degree Type

Open Access Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department or School

Teacher Education

Committee Member

Tsu-Yin Wu, PhD, Chair

Committee Member

Robert Carpenter, PhD

Committee Member

Toni Jones, PhD

Committee Member

Huei Lee, PhD


Mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets are being used in healthcare settings for better patient outcomes. By laying the foundation for mobile device use in the educational setting, students can be better prepared for nursing practice in this technology-rich environment (National League for Nursing [NLN], 2008). The purpose of this cross-sectional study was to investigate the mobile device acceptance (MDA) model that guides nursing students’ decision to use mobile devices as educational tools. The MDA model also guides the measurement development and psychometrics testing for the MDA constructs in order to understand mobile device use and to examine correlates in the nursing student population. The study included variables that measure diversity including students who are first generation college students (FGCS), English as a second language (ESL), Pell grant eligible, recipient of welfare/public housing, and ethnic minority. The study also tested moderating effects between demographic variables and MDA constructs.

The study sample included 327 nursing students from two BSN programs who completed the study instrument. The results showed that the MDA instrument had strong reliability and promising construct validity. Diverse students (i.e., FGCS, ESL, Pell grant eligible, recipient of welfare, ethnic minority) had significantly higher MDA scores than non-diverse students. Age was considered a main variable in the MDA model. The preferred size and function of device had significant MDA results. Based on the regression analysis, three predictor variables (i.e., diversity, social persuasion, and affective state) explained a small percentage of variance in the standardized test scores (i.e., ATI).

Nursing educators can support diverse nursing students through the continued use of mobile devices in the nursing curriculum. Further examination is needed to see if diverse students are affected more than non-diverse students by not gaining admission into nursing programs. As mobile devices continue to be embedded into health care, nurse educators and students can use them in educational settings.