Date of Award


Degree Type

Honors College Thesis

Academic Program

Nursing BSN



First Advisor

Lisa Green, D.N.P.

Advisor Department



The goal of this study was to assess senior-level nursing students’ knowledge of informal caregivers of dementia patients, their confidence in their ability to work with informal caregivers, and how well they believe their nursing program prepared them to assist informal caregivers. Seventeen (n = 17) Bachelor of Science (BSN) nursing students participated in the study. A twenty-four-question survey was emailed to both junior- and senior-level students in the five-semester BSN program at the University of Southern Mississippi (USM). Responses from students of different levels were collected to determine if an accurate understanding of informal caregivers of dementia patients was more prevalent in senior-level students when compared to junior-level students. The survey included a total of four question sets. The first question set required students to select the semester of the BSN program in which they were enrolled at the time of taking the survey. After selecting their semester within the program, students were asked five questions regarding their attitude towards caregivers, five multiple-choice questions assessing the accuracy of their knowledge of caregivers, eight questions focusing on their beliefs on nurses’ role when working with caregivers, and five questions determining how well they felt their BSN program had prepared them to support caregivers. The majority of study participants believed they were well-prepared to collaborate with informal caregivers in clinical practice. However, the students’ responses to the multiple-choice questions assessing the accuracy of their knowledge indicate that further education on informal caregivers of dementia patients may be required.