Date of Award

Spring 5-7-2021

Document Type

DNP Project

Project Team Faculty Member

Cynthia Schmidt, Ph. D., RN

Project Team Faculty Member

Mary Zerlan, DNP, CRNA, APN


certified registered nurse anesthetists, anesthesia, continuing education credit, continuing education, continued professional development, and professional conferences


The Illinois Association of Nurse Anesthetists (IANA) is a professional organization representing Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs). To ensure compliance with high standards of care in the profession, CRNAs are required to obtain continuing education units (CEUs) for each 4-year certification period. The IANA offers conferences in both fall and spring, however, a loss in attendance and revenue at state meetings concerns the board members as to how state members are complying with the educational requirements to remain certified. It was imperative that the IANA needed to implement new educational opportunities that actively engaged CRNAs resulting in an increase in clinical competence, member attendance, and revenue. This project involved the development and use of a 15-question survey to identify format preferences for CE opportunities and barriers to earning CEUs. A total of 143 CRNAs completed the survey, reflecting a 7.6% participation rate statewide. The top three preferences for CEUs were: online modules and case studies (63.38%, n =90), in-person conferences within the state of Illinois (54.93%, n = 78), and online conferences (47.89%, n=68). The top three barriers encountered to earning CEUs were: being able to take time away from work (40.14%, n=57), family restraints (19.72%, n=28), and uninteresting topics offered (17.61%, n=25). The results of the assessment will guide an educational plan to meet the needs of state members, by providing the preferred CE opportunities. Providing the educational needs for state members in the long-term will increase revenue to promote the advocacy work of IANA.

Download Full Text Above

BackgroundProblemClinicalRelevance_Nichting.docx (19 kB)
Background, Problem, and Clinical Relevance

ProjectMethods_Nichting.docx (20 kB)
Project Methods

ConceptualFramework_Nichting.docx (12 kB)
Conceptual Framework

ContinuingEducationSurvey_Nichting.docx (25 kB)
Continuing Education Survey

LiteratureReview_Nichting.docx (41 kB)
Literature Review

DataAnalysis_Nichting.docx (23 kB)
Evaluation Process

ExecutiveSummary_Nichting.docx (20 kB)
Executive Summary

References_Nichting.docx (17 kB)



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.