Many nurse educators in Canada have participated in a culture where their primary responsibility was to educate nurses and provide service to their communities. Over the last three decades, major rethinking of this focus has resulted in the expectation that nurse educators engage in scholarship. In this paper, we describe a community development project designed to foster nurse educators' scholarship. This approach was chosen not only to build scholarship capacity amongst nursing faculty, but also to effect a change in the culture of scholarship prevalent in many academic environments. Rather than focusing on individual scholarly endeavours, the project partners' vision is for a collaborative approach that creates a community of scholars working together.
To better understand the nature of a quality practice environment for nurse educators, a survey instrument was constructed and pilot tested. he aim of the study was to highlight some of the critical issues needing to be addressed to support the recruitment and retention of nurse educators. The knowledge generated from the survey makes explicit what nurse educators consider to be important to them in their environments and whether they are currently experiencing these elements. Based on the preliminary results, additional research needs to be undertaken to further develop the psychometric properties of the tool along with a closer examination of the culture of schools of nursing. The information generated may serve to enhance nurse educators' environments to better reflect what they consider to be important.