Nursing Research Grants
Join the exceptional nurses who have transformed health care through research to the Nursing Grants Program. For more than 60 years, the program has supported nurses in making extraordinary contributions to science. In this time, more than 1,200 nurses have used their unique insight to investigate subjects that have had a direct impact on the health of the nation.
These nurse-led research projects have been made possible through the generous contributions of organizations, foundations, corporations and individuals. Consider donating today to advance the practice of nursing.
Who can apply?
Nurse researchers of all levels and expertise both in academia and in clinical settings are encouraged to apply. Applications are assessed on contributions to advancing healthcare science and improving patient-centered care.
Available research grants
Explore the list below as a guide for the future grants offered. While some grants are open to all, others have research area requirements or give preference to membership in a specific nursing association. Specific grants are available for clinically based research, in recognition of the integral role that nurses play in designing better care.
Call for applications
The portal is open to accept new applications annually between February 1 and May 1.
Nursing Research Grants Policies
Click below to learn more about the Nursing Research Grants Policies.
Call for reviewers
The Program relies on experienced and dedicated volunteer researchers to review the applications and determine funding. Apply to become part of the reviewer committee and help to set the highest standards for the profession.
Join the exceptional nurses who have transformed health care through research, with the American Nurses Foundation Nursing Grant Program.
Past researcher profiles
Ann Kutney-Lee, PhD, RN
Shaping care practices through nursing research - 2013
With support from the American Nurses Foundation, Ann Kutney-Lee, PhD, RN, studied emerging Magnet® hospitals to find out how this recognition influences outcomes. “These results will provide some of the first longitudinal evidence of the relationship between Magnet credentialing and the outcomes of nurses and the patients they care for,” she explained.
Emily Tuthill, BSN, RN
Shaping care practices through nursing research - 2013
In 2013, 20 projects in total were funded, including one submitted by Emily Tuthill, BSN, RN, who studies health behavior change among breastfeeding HIV-positive mothers in South Africa. “Through applying behavioral change theory we aim to provide a practical and innovative approach to increase the practice of exclusive breastfeeding, which is the cornerstone to public health measures focused on child survival and improved overall infant health.”
Amanda Brown, MSN, RN, CPN, CNL
Pediatric nurses’ assessment of procedural pain in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder - 2012
Ever since Amanda Brown began studying for her PhD at the University of Florida, she knew she wanted to study autism in children. “It’s important to assess pain in anyone,” says Brown. “Pain that is un-assessed or unrecognized goes untreated, and increased suffering can extend healing time in patients of all ages.” This is especially critical for children who are developmentally delayed. Brown’s research focused on the work of pediatric acute care nurses at Wolfson Children’s Hospital, but hopes the study will lead to an improvement in the whole inpatient experience for children with autism.
Bronwyn Long, DNP, MBA, RN, ACHPN, AOCNS
Improving quality of life in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease by integrating palliative approaches to dyspnea, anxiety, and depression - 2012
As the Lung Cancer Center program coordinator at National Jewish Health, the leading respiratory hospital in the nation, Bronwyn Long was regularly seeing patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a term for respiratory disorders such as emphysema and chronic bronchitis. “Over time COPD patients lose the ability to be active,” says Long. “It’s a source of real frustration.” Using palliative care — customized medicine that focuses on bringing comfort to a patient — Long is looking to ease the physical, social, intellectual, and existential distresses that accompany the disease. “The goal is to make life more tolerable on a day-to-day basis.”
Tanyka Smith, MS, FNP-Certified, RN
Sexual protective strategies and condom use among older African American women - 2010
The Foundation’s work with nurse scholars like Smith helps to advance the understanding of HIV prevention. “I am focused on understanding and addressing health disparities among ethnic minorities — with a specific focus on HIV prevention in African-American women. The Foundation's funding was vital in providing me with the foundation for gaining ‘hands on’ experience as a novice nurse scientist that is essential for my ultimate development into an independent researcher.”
Linda Finch, PhD, RN
Uncovering the science behind the value of caring - 2004
When Dr. Finch made her first attempt to garner a Foundation grant, she was not successful. But because reviewers' took the time to offer their advice, she was able to resubmit a stronger research proposal, which led to her becoming a 2004 Foundation scholar. "I wanted to understand how caring is perceived by nurses and patients, what they viewed as caring behaviors, and what it is that moves patients positively toward better outcomes," Finch says.
Barbara Medoff-Cooper, PhD, RN, CRNP, FAAN
Bolstering the science of infant development - 1983
In 1983, Barbara Medoff-Cooper, PhD, CRNP, RN, FAAN, used her Foundation grant to study what was close to her heart—infant development. "I was seeing a number of preemies in the office," says Medoff Cooper, a Pennsylvania State Nurses Association member. "Their parents were having problems taking care of them, because the babies were so crabby, so difficult." So for her dissertation, she and a colleague went to the parents' homes and collected a range of data about the babies. The goal of her research project was to see how those factors typically influenced the babies' temperament and development at six months of age.
Jean McSweeney, PhD, RN, FAHA, FAAN
Women and heart health - 1983
Jean McSweeney has always been interested in the human heart. She worked for many years as a critical care nurse, where she routinely provided care to cardiac patients in the ICU. “I soon realized that we didn’t know enough about women and cardiovascular disease,” says McSweeney, an Arkansas Nurses Association member.
For her first post-dissertation research in 1993, she decided to focus on women. Through that study, she learned that some women attributed their Myocardial Infarctions (MIs) to smoking, being overweight, or a lifestyle that was either too stressful or too sedentary. One of her key findings was that women were willing to change whatever they viewed as the primary cause of their heart attack, such as quitting smoking
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