Role of Clinical Preceptor In Nursing Education

Nurses Educator 2

 Clinical Preceptors and Effect on Nursing Education

Role of Clinical Preceptor In Nursing Education

Who Is A Clinical Preceptor,Clinical Preceptor-ship A Historical View and Need,Benefits of Clinical Preceptor-ship In Nursing Education,Impact of Clinical Preceptor-ship In Nursing Education.

Who Is A Clinical Preceptor

    The clinical preceptor is a nurse who works one-on-one with a nursing student during a time-limited experience in the clinical area. This activity is accomplished with the support of nursing faculty for guidance and evaluation of objectives. The triad relationship between the preceptor, student, and faculty member assists in bridging the gap between theory and practice in the education of the student. Clinical preceptors perform complex, multifaceted roles: functioning as a role model, teaching clinical skills, and modeling critical thinking for the student while delivering optimal patient care (Billings & Halstead, 2012 McClure & Black, 2013; Omansky , 2010; Udlis , 2008 ) 

Clinical Preceptor-ship A Historical View and Need

    Preceptor-ship models developed in the 1970s were used for new nursing graduates in the orientation process. The 1970s model was quickly adapted into undergraduate education, with administrators in the 1980s and 1990s recognizing the value of the registered nurse (RN) preceptor (McClure & Black, 2013). The use of the clinical preceptor has been widely accepted and used in a variety of countries, such as Australia, Canada, United States, United Kingdom, and the Scandinavian countries (Luhanga, Billay, Grundy, Myrick, & Yonge, 2010 ) . Clinical preceptors are used in both undergraduate and advanced practice nursing programs. 

    For both levels, preceptors create an opportunity for students to synthesize theoretical knowledge and incorporate evidence into practice (Billings & Halstead. 2012) The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN, 2012) provides specific criteria for advanced practice clinical preceptors. Requirements of the preceptor include appropriate educational experience, 1-year of clinical experience, orientation to the educational program requirements, and ongoing contact with the advanced practice faculty. In the undergraduate programs, preceptors are used with senior students during a clinical immersion experience throughout the semester ( Omansky , 2010). 

    AACN (2009) suggests that preceptors have formal mentoring in the academic and practice partnership. The literature suggests that when preceptors function fully in their role, they know the expectations of the role, the best methods to role model practice, and how to socialize the student in the nursing profession (Martin, Brewer, & Barr, 2011).

Benefits of Clinical Preceptor-ship In Nursing Education

    The one-to-one relationship with a consistent preceptor is a critical attribute for developing an effective preceptor relationship. This relationship allows the preceptor to provide immediate feedback on actions and questions in a safe learning environment (Luhanga et al. 2010). In multiple studies, an overwhelming number of students report a positive professional and learning relationship with preceptors. It was found that student knowledge, integration, autonomy, confidence, authority, and advocacy all increase (Kim, 2007; Rebeschi & Aronson, 2009; Wieland, Altmiller, Dorr, & Wolf, 2007).

    In a review of 16 studies from the late 1980s and 1990s, the preceptor model was equal and, in some cases, better than traditional clinical experience in preparing students for the nursing role ( Udlis , 2008) Common views from preceptors are their enjoyment of working with students and assisting with the development of nursing (Raines, 2012) The preceptor model is beneficial to educational institutions in addressing the faculty shortage, decreasing the high cost of clinical education, and providing clinical expertise (Sedgwick & Harris, 2012). One overall benefit of the preceptor model is the development of an academic service relationship or partnership. 

    In the past, the relationship between academia and health care institutions was primarily faculty practice models and centers for research. Today, the majority of academic service relationships is focused on increasing the nursing workforce, with safe, competent nurses (Beal, 2010).

Impact of Clinical Preceptor-ship In Nursing Education

    Clinical preceptors are integral to the success of graduate and undergraduate nursing students. Adequate preparation and orientation are imperative for the preceptor role (McClure & Black, 2013) Role ambiguity, conflict, and role overload may cause stress for the preceptor, Sedgwick and Harris (2012) identify necessary supports for the clinical preceptor to include financial and educational support. Clinical preceptors deserve recognition and support from leadership, faculty, and peers. (Luhanga et al. 2010; Omansky , 2010). Future empirical research should focus on precept for characteristics, orientation methods, and other educational needs to identify how these relate to successful preceptor programs (Martin et al, 2011; Udlis , 2008).

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