Nurse Educator M.S.

Year Approved


First Advisor

Bredow, Tim


Background: Since the dawn of the automobile, crashes have resulted in significant morbidity and mortality. Unfortunately, in our modern era the novice teen driver population suffers the most. In an attempt to decrease crashes, government officials have mandated that all teen drivers take a driver’s education course prior to having their driver’s license. Even with this intervention teen drivers still suffer from the highest morbidity and mortality rates from their crashes compared to any other population group. Recognizing this public health tragedy, the government has sponsored multiple studies examining various ways of reducing these crashes. As a result of these studies, laws have been enacted requiring graduated licensing programs, prohibiting night driving and smart device allowances and limiting the number of passengers in the car. Unfortunately, these laws and restrictions have not solved the problem. Purpose: The purpose of this critical literature review is to determine if there is significant evidence that shows that teen morbidity and mortality can dramatically decrease if the novice driver completes a defensive driving course that includes lecture and behind-the-wheel training of aggressive defensive driving maneuvers on a closed course. Results: Using John Hopkin’s literature review matrix method, eleven studies, level 1-4 ranked good to excellent studies were synthesized and informed by Piaget and Bandura’s learning theories. Conclusion: Review and synthesis of the current research highlighted two important concepts. First, current research is limited, inconclusive and qualitative in nature, therefore lacking enough information to drive public policy or nursing education. Secondly, if quantitative research was performed it would allow for anecdotal information from car coaches and accurately highlight the benefit of the teen car control courses.

Degree Name

M.S. Nurse Educator

Document Type

Masterʼs thesis

Included in

Nursing Commons