Nursing Theorist: Patricia Benner Biography
Patricia Benner was born in Hampton, Virginia, and spent her childhood in California, where she had her early and professional education. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Nursing from Pasadena College in 1964, her Master’s Degree in Medical Surgical Nursing from University of California, Berkely.
Upon completion of her doctorate in 1982, Benner achieved the position of Associate Professor in 1989 in the Department of Physiological Nursing in the School of Nursing at the University of California, San Francisco and become tenured professor in 2989. IN 2002, she moved to the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences at UCSF, where she is a professor and the first occupant of the Thelma Shobe Cook Endowed Chair in Ethics and Spirituality.
Dr. Patricia Benner is an internationally noted researcher and lecturer on health, stress and coping, skill acquisition and ethics. Her work had wide influence on nursing both in the United States and internationally. She was recently elected an honorary fellow of the Royal College of Nursing. Her work has influence beyond nursing in the areas of clinical practice and clinical ethics. She has been a staff nurse in the areas of medical-surgical, emergency room, coronary care, intensive care units and home care. Currently, her research includes the study of nursing practice in intensive care units and nursing ethics.
Dr. Patricia Benner acknowledged that her thinking in Nursing had been influenced greatly by Virginia Henderson, who commented that because of the nature and scope of her work, “From Novice to Expert”, it had potential to materially affect practice and at the same time, the nurses’ preparation.