Nursing Educators Role Term Paper
Academic nursing educators face challenges that emerge due to dynamics in the political, the cultural, and the economic facets of the contemporary society. Notably, the political realm impacts nursing educators through the introduction of unpopular health policies. For instance, legislators may opt to limit funding to the health education sector, which demoralizes the ANE professionals from executing their mandate in earnest.
Despite the importance of the clinical education sector, cultural challenges still impact the quality of teaching. Most importantly, cultural competence has emerged as a crucial area of emphasis in the nursing pedagogy. However, the limited number of ANE professionals limits their ability to exhaustively teach various cultural factors that are unique to every clinical setting. As a result, the educators may feel that they have failed in their role of priming nursing students for their professional mandates.
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Interprofessional education plays a central role in developing healthcare students as future interprofessional team members. Oftentimes, complex medical issues are best addressed by interprofessional teams, whose combined expertise offers an all-inclusive panacea that leads to improved medical outcomes. One of the most common interprofessional activities that I have participated in interdepartmental research.
The organization expects to have a competent nurse educator with vast knowledge, attitude, and skills in the adoption of new didactic approaches in planning, implementing, and assessing nurse education programs.
The primary role of an ANE is the facilitation of professional development through curriculum development and the transformation of the education system for the future. An ANE can lead the institution towards embracing change in various aspects of nursing education. Notably, the educator can advocate for diversity of the student body to bridge the existing gender gap among nursing professionals, involvement in statewide curriculum planning, integration of service-learning programs, and adoption of IT-empowered learning in the organization. Primarily, nurse educators should play a leading role in the creation of a preferred future in nursing practice.
As an ANE, the leading role in curriculum development is to design academic programs that align with state regulations, which govern nursing instruction. Improvements to the existing curriculum are also necessary to ensure that the educational programs are both practical and responsive to the continually evolving health care environment. My role in the accreditation process is to ensure that students undergo a rigorous assessment process to ascertain that they meet the set standards of accreditation.
- Why do nursing educators combine the hybrid role of teaching and nursing practice?
- Which professional body evaluates the performance of academic nurse educators?
- What are the evaluation criteria to affirm that an ANE possesses all the core competencies outlined by the National League for Nursing?
- Describe ways in which academic nurse educators can promote the capability of nursing students to participate in interprofessional programs.
- What are the competencies, traits, and skills of successful academic nurse educators?
The academic nurse educator has a crucial role in building student diversity among the student population. They can address issues regarding under-representation of racial minorities, males, as a method of addressing the factors that impact the development of cultural competence in nursing education. The nurse educator is a participant is curriculum design as well as the custodian of formulating program outcomes (National League for Nursing, n.d.). Therefore, the ANE is responsible for teaching courses that reflect contemporary trends in health care. Additionally, the academic nurse educator is knowledgeable about the ideal learning environment and has the mandate to ensure discipline and direction of learning activities.
Facilitator of Learning. The nurse educator creates an environment that supports student learning in the classroom, laboratory, and clinical settings.
Communicator and Collaborator. The nurse educator should possess advanced communication skills that will facilitate the conveyance of skills to those that are non-experts. As a collaborator, the ANE must have excellent interpersonal skills to team with colleagues and students in the quest to provide a comprehensive learning experience for the students.
Professional Development Activities. A nurse educator must display a commitment to nurturing budding nursing professionals by equipping them with a strong knowledge base for their professional endeavors. Subsequently, the educator should accomplish this mandate through mentoring and acting as a source of information to students.
Change Leader. The nurse educator functions as a change agent and leader through identifying contemporary trends in healthcare and assisting in the development of a responsive educational curriculum or policy framework based on research evidence.
Educational Advocate. The nurse educator should possess strong advocacy skills to advocate for the betterment of the profession. Educators can fulfill this responsibility by participating in activities that enhance the visibility of nursing and various contributions that it offers to society. A good example can be speaking at career fairs to enlighten the general public.
The academic nurse educator prepares nursing students for clinical practice. Therefore, the knowledge and skills that the educator inculcates are foundational to the quality of patient care that the students will deliver once they become practitioners. A nurse educator should model an education experience that fosters cultural competence, ethical practices, translation of research to nursing practice, and acquisition of knowledge that bolsters general expertise in the nursing profession.
Teaching at a university or a hospital are the most common roles of an ANE. However, the role of the nurse educator goes beyond teaching. Some of the common areas that academic nurse educators are considered functional include coaching other nurses, assisting in the development of life-care planning, participating in policy development, or helping patients to navigate the complexities of the insurance landscape.
The first strategy of relating to external stakeholders such as hospitals is to maintain close contact with the preceptors, who have an essential role in inducting newly graduated students to the professional responsibilities of nursing. Similarly, nurse preceptors guide student nurses during practicum and write useful recommendations that an ANE can use to determine the areas of weakness and strengths among their students. The ANE can also work collaboratively with the preceptor as a source of support and mentorship to facilitate the integration of the student into the clinical setting.
The ANE can introduce students to interprofessional education (IPE) through exploration and connection with healthcare professionals from other institutions or states that have interprofessional collaborative programs underway. The role of the nurse educator is to facilitate the introduction of nursing students to collaborative programs through shared educational experiences in joint classes, service-learning, and strategic clinical rotations.
The nurse educator can foster cross-disciplinary collaboration between students and professionals, such as physical and occupational therapists, social workers, or pharmacists through the identification of programs that students can jointly participate with them. Alternatively, the educator can also organize to have these practitioners as preceptors for the nursing students during their externship programs.
Clinical education is the crux of professional learning in nursing. The recent explosion in the use of smartphone devices has compelled nursing faculties to consider their integration in teaching and learning strategies. However, the use of smartphone devices presents an educational challenge to nursing educators.
The widespread use of mobile technologies presents a viable alternative mode of instruction for nursing educators. Notably, the use of mobile applications that are tailored to augment the nursing curriculum can significantly improve the quality of nursing education. However, inherent problems associated with smartphone technologies, such as the high cost of the devices, the generic applications that do not sufficiently fulfill the needs of nursing students, and the susceptibility to information security breaches make smartphones a major hindrance to the facilitation of nursing education. Besides, the unregulated world of application development does not guarantee quality curriculum content for students. Learners can easily become victims of misinformation when they use unregulated applications as sources of reference. As a result, nursing educators may have reservations towards the adoption of these mobile technologies in nursing.
The use of smartphone technologies is gaining momentum and a position of higher significance in the complex world of health care education. However, despite the benefits of smartphones, available research divulges that majority of the existing educational applications are generic off-the-shelf software, which do not address the unique requirements of nursing students (O’Connor & Andrews, 2016). Besides, different research establishes that the use of mobile devices is associated with multiple barriers, including infection control issues, technical difficulties, inability to control confidential information, and negative perceptions by some users such as hospital staff (Lee, Min, Oh & Shim, 2018). Similarly, a study to appraise the importance of using smartphones to enhance student-nurse teacher cooperation during practicum revealed that problems with connectivity are rampant as there was lack of training and ongoing support on the use of smartphone technologies (Strandell-Laine, Stolt, Leino-Kilpi & Saarikoski, 2015). However, the researchers recommend further studies to assess the effectiveness of smartphone devices in enhancing student-nurse teacher cooperation.
Despite the challenges, smartphone technologies have a vast potential to improve the nursing education sector. Based on the complexity and sensitivity of nursing in healthcare, there should be regulation in the software development sector to ensure that the developers create applications that are not only relevant but also responsive to the dynamic needs of nursing students. Additionally, training and support for nursing students will be vital to facilitate the process of knowledge acquisition from smartphones and cooperation between academic nurse educators and their students.
Incorporation of teaching, scholarship, and service present a challenge for many novice ANE professionals. My approach to effective teaching will be communication with experienced ANE practitioners to know the type of assignments that I can give students. Incorporating scholarship requires learning the institutional culture to understand the performance expectations of the organization. As an educator, I will assume the leadership role to guide students by setting meaningful educational goals and guiding them through plans that they can implement to achieve the objectives. To this end, I will strive to enhance my academic expertise through active contribution to research that enhances nursing practice. Expectations in terms of service vary per academic environment.
Consequently, the pursuit of this aspect in nursing education requires me to acclimatize to the norms and values of the chosen educational setting before making an informed decision regarding service. Nonetheless, I will pursue networking opportunities with peers to help me integrate in the teaching fraternity within the soonest time possible.
The nursing profession experiences a myriad of ethical issues. One way to address these issues is through educating nursing professionals before they begin their career. During my transition to the role of an ANE, I will adhere to ethical principles that relate to issues, such as academic dishonesty, breaches of confidentiality, violence between peers, and defamation.
The role of an ANE requires an ideal environment that is supportive of teaching and learning activities. Most importantly, an environment that allows the development and implementation of academic strategies that promote open, respectful, and candid expression of ideas in nursing. Additionally, meeting a senior faculty member who is willing to serve as a mentor in the academic setting can be crucial towards achieving mastery of best practices in teaching and evaluation of coursework for students.
Lee, H., Min, H., Oh, S. M., & Shim, K. (2018). Mobile technology in undergraduate nursing education: A systematic review. Healthcare Informatics Research, 24(2), 97–108. doi:10.4258/hir.2018.24.2.97
National League for Nursing. (n.d.). Nurse educator core competency. National League for Nursing. Retrieved from www.nln.org/professional-development-programs/competencies-for-nursing-education/nurse-educator-core-competency
O’Connor, S., & Andrews, T., (2016). Co-designing mobile apps to assist in clinical nursing education: A study protocol. Studies in Health Technology and Informatics, 963-964. doi:10.3233/978-1-61499-658-3-963
Strandell-Laine, C., Stolt, M., Leino-Kilpi, H., & Saarikoski, M. (2015). Use of mobile devices in nursing student-nurse teacher cooperation during the clinical practicum: An integrative review. Nurse Education Today, 35(3), 493. doi: 10.1016/j.nedt.2014.10.007