Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

EdD Educational Leadership


Educational Services and Leadership


College of Education


Kerrigan, Monica

Committee Member 1

Galbiati, Jacqueline

Committee Member 2

Lown, Maris


phenomenology, remediation, wrongness, testing


Nursing students--Psychology; National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses


Educational Psychology


Being wrong is a common phenomenon for students in academic environments; however this phenomenon has yet to be described from the student perspective. The purpose of this phenomenologic inquiry is to describe the realization of academic wrongness (RAW) as experienced by senior level nursing students during a high stakes testing period. Observations, class documents, communications, and semi-structured interviews were collected to gain a full description for the realization of academic wrongness within context and as this phenomenon unfolded for the students. The data were analyzed using Moustakas (1994) 7 step phenomenological process. Fourteen invariant constituents emerged during data analysis which when combined created three themes: stories to tell, powerlessness, and anger. These themes suggested interdependence of perceived cognition, self-beliefs, and social structure of the educational environment with respect to RAW. The students used stories to describe their experiences with the realization of academic wrongness which explained, minimized, and justified their actions and interactions that led to RAW. They expressed feeling powerless and angry during RAW, feelings which did not support students during review and remediation activities. Although students stated the need for content review and remediation, the impact of RAW on these students limited behaviors consistent with engagement in review and remediation activities.