Creative Teaching Strategies In Nursing Education and Their Evaluation

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Creative Teaching Strategies and Their Evaluation In Nursing Education 

Creative Teaching Strategies In Nursing Education and Their Evaluation

What are Creative Teaching Strategies and Creativity Fatigue, Tips For Good Power Point Presentation In Nursing Education, Evaluation of Teaching Strategies In Nursing Education.

What are Creative Teaching Strategies and Creativity Fatigue

    Always use creative strategies in moderation. The class that’s barraged with too many strategies and innovative methods will experience “creativity fatigue.” One to three strategies per class or session is probably enough to introduce the concept of collaborative learning. 

    Small doses of creative strategy will also keep you from forcing uncomfortable learning styles on your students. This caution is especially important for students accustomed to passive learning styles and noninteractive teaching. Your students may need time to get comfortable with their own involvement and their need to participate actively in the teaching learning process. 

    If a class is reluctant to transform its own learning practices, you can choose some of the more personal and less collaborative teaching strategies, such as those that involve personal introspection and writing. By beginning with less threatening strategies, you may eventually progress to more active ones. 

    Remember to use any kind of strategy sparingly to keep methods innovative and fun. Active learning methods can be difficult to introduce into a nursing curriculum. Students used to academic settings may prefer a passive, spoon feeding approach to learning. “Just tell me what’s on the test” is the motto for some of these students. 

    Professional nursing groups may be fatigued and regard class time as a reprieve from the demands of client care. They may prefer just listening to participating in a creative strategy. Again, choose your strategies judiciously and add them sparingly. More Ideas for Groups Nurse learners may or may not be responsive to working in groups. 

    One of the biggest hurdles in such work is to assign the groups initially. If your class time is limited, you may choose to establish the groups in advance. This approach gives you a chance to split up cliques and ensure the same skill and experience level in each group. 

    Also, students who don’t know each other are spared the embarrassment of grouping themselves. You can often facilitate small group work simply by using seat placement in the room. See Group Thought for more hints on group work. Set the Rules Not only do creative teaching strategies stimulate learning, but they also engender activity, excitement, and discussion. 

    At the outset you need to establish ground rules that specify how to carry out each strategy, the time frame for each activity, and your expectations for student participation and behaviour. You’ll need signals to initiate creative strategies and to indicate a return to more traditional methods, which call for quiet listening. Some instructors use a whistle or some other sound to signal transitions. 

    You must also allow time for transitions between strategies. Some spontaneous conversation and activity during the transitions is to be expected. Not all strategies will be well received or embraced by every student. Learning style, generation, cultural norms, and personality traits all influence a student’s response to teaching strategies. 

    Encourage total participation, but respect your students by trying to make your teaching comfortable for all of them. Develop Your Style Make sure you are knowledgeable and well versed in the content before you integrate creative teaching strategies. 

    The first time you present on a topic may not be the time to implement elaborate strategies. Instead, engage students by using one or two simple collaborative strategies. Focus on delivering organized content that your students can understand. Subsequent teaching will provide more opportunities to use creative methods. 

    Most important, as you add strategies to your teaching portfolio, you’ll develop a teaching style unique to your personality. You must be comfortable with your methods to convey an active learning message to the class. Use the strategies in this book as a springboard to creating new and different teaching methods. 

    Not only should students be having fun with creative strategies, you should too. If teaching becomes laborious, it’s time to re-energize yourself by assessing your methods and possibly revising your strategies. Make Learning Fun Humor needs to be funny obviously. As a teacher, you carry the burden of making sure that everybody can laugh at your humor. 

    It must be politically correct, without offensive words or connotations, culturally appropriate, and generally understandable to the class. If you aren’t sure whether something is offensive, don’t use it. Chances are that you’ll offend someone if you do. Humor changes the pace in a teaching session, reinforces ideas, promotes retention, and puts content on a human plane. 

    When class content is fun to learn and to teach, your students get the idea that you like to teach and are excited to be doing so. Paulson1 offers a great guide to humour in the workplace (see also the Annotated Bibliography). Advantages and Disadvantages of Creative Strategies The major advantage of creative teaching strategies is the ability to reel in the students and get them to enjoy learning. 

    An instructor can best reach a student by combining creativity, teaching skills, and knowledge of the content. Creative strategies facilitate transitions from one topic to another and appeal to diverse learning styles. 

    They help students connect their knowledge with their experience, encourage lasting retention of material, and stimulate discussion and reflection. Creative strategies have their disadvantages. 

    You take a risk with each method: it may work well or it may “crash and burn.” Planning and preparation time may be significant. Also, creative strategies can drain the class time needed to cover content. Some students may prefer more passive learning methods. 

    Others may not connect the purpose of the exercise with the class content. They may misconstrue information, not appreciate its significance, or neglect to apply lessons from the exercise to their theoretical knowledge and nursing practice. Some students may regard creative strategies as unprofessional or childish, unrelated to the knowledge they need to function as professional nurses. 

    Finally, your greatest challenge may be the time and effort required to change your teaching habits and launch your students outside their comfort zone. That being said, you as instructor have the choice of using as many creative strategies as you feel comfortable with. You’re not trying to overhaul your entire way of teaching, just to spice it up a little. 

    That’s the beauty of this book. It’s up to you whether to employ one or 100 strategies in your years as a teacher. Finding the Teaching Fuel, you will be able to find “teaching fuel” in some of the most unexpected places. Quotations and stories may come from magazines, books, calendars, e-mail, quotation anthologies, or colleagues. 

    Ideas will come to you in the shower, at a stop light, or when you’re falling asleep at night. Anything thought provoking, funny, or relevant, or any Ahhah, is potential class material. When looking for teaching fuel, keep your professionalism in mind. Remember the key rules of borrowing from others: adhere to fair use laws and cite known sources to give credit where it’s due. 

    Seek strategies in unlikely places and share them with others. Guidelines for PowerPoint Power Point has changed the way we teach, especially in the lecture format. It lets teachers connect with the Internet during a lecture, linking to Web sites and other online resources. We all know a picture is worth a thousand words. 

    Scanning in photographs, drawings, other graphics, and charts from articles or textbooks helps us appeal to the visual learner. We can also incorporate movie clips, clip art, and animation. Downloading songs and subject specific sounds, such as heart and breath sounds, provides a valuable experience for the whole class and especially for auditory learners. 

    Using PowerPoint, we can download handouts from a remote source or through Web-based educational platforms. Handout formats vary, so you can choose the ones you prefer. Blank formats save printer ink and download time. The use of computer and LCD technology provides audio visual materials that many students can access simultaneously. 

    This method, which is usually reliable, frees students from the burden of taking copious notes. Slide-based notes appeal especially to auditory learners, who can focus on listening rather than write furiously without taking in the material. A PowerPoint presentation helps you steer the course of your class, keep the lecture on track, and maintain the pace. 

    It can guide both you and your students by highlighting key areas within the class content. In contrast, PowerPoint must be used judiciously and with some caution. The class or lecture is only as good as the instructor. No amount of fancy graphics will compensate for a teacher who doesn’t know the subject well. PowerPoint is an instructional tool, not a crutch to get teachers through unfamiliar material. 

Tips For Good Power Point Presentation In Nursing Education

Here are some hints to make PowerPoint an even more effective tool in your teaching portfolio:

1:Make sure you use at least a 24-point font on your slides.

2:Use a single font throughout a presentation. For emphasis, use upper and lower-case letters, bold type, underlining, shading, and italics.

3:Use the custom animation function to focus on key words. Animation can be used at the beginning or end of a presentation or to emphasize a word at any point. You can change settings to vary any available effects, including animation and the prompt to start it. Be careful not to overuse this function.

4:Slide transition animation, used when you advance to the next slide, offers interesting formats. Use the random transition setting for a different type of transition with each slide.

5:Use dark backgrounds with light lettering for larger classes. Experiment with different slide designs and color schemes to find what works best with specific class content.

6:Don’t use too many slides. As a general rule, you should lecture at least 1 to 2 minutes for every slide. For complex or technical topics, one slide every 4 to 5 minutes may be the maximum number to use in your lecture.

7:When writing a class lecture, use caution if you’re making the slides concurrently. The temptation is to write all the lecture content on the slide. Instead, use the Note Page function for your lecture; the actual slides include only integral information.

8:Slides should include prompts and bulleted ideas, not every fact discussed in class. The general rule is to limit a slide to six bullet points, with no more than six words per bullet. Include graphics and animation to increase interest (see earlier). Keep students actively engaged by leaving blanks in the slides for them to fill in during the presentation.

9:For some students, PowerPoint handouts have replaced in-class note taking. Encourage your students to take notes related to class discussions, their questions, or interesting points used to augment the slides. 

    For students who have trouble knowing what to write, suggest that they take class notes in their usual way. Then have them incorporate the PowerPoint notes into their written notes after class. This revisiting of material is especially helpful for visual and kinaesthetic learners.

10:Control the pace of your class. Allow for questions and pauses by not using automatic timing for slide transitions.

11:Don’t forget that a well-informed, experienced, and engaging teacher is worth far more than an elaborate slide presentation. The value of teacher-student interchange, discussion, and class attendance cannot be overemphasized. 

 Evaluation of Teaching Strategies In Nursing Education

    We need a research foundation to support evidence based nursing education. In the early years of nursing research, interest focused on how nurses learned and how to enhance learning. As research priorities became more focused on the client outcomes, funding for and emphasis on nursing education research diminished. 

    Now the earlier interest has been renewed. The emphasis is on developing a better understanding of what works in nursing education, and on carrying evidence-based nursing focus from the practice setting into the nursing educational arena. Readers are charged with conducting evaluative research as they use the creative strategies found in this book. 

    Much of the evidence so far is anecdotal, based on instructor and student satisfaction with a teaching method. The strategies in this book have all succeeded and appear intuitively to have a positive impact on learning. Few have undergone rigorous research to determine their true value. 

    As is noted by McCartney and Morin,2 “Faculty need to find the best evidence for decision-making in education and no longer base their practice on time honored tradition (“because we have always done it that way”).” Several books listed in the Annotated Bibliography discuss the research available for selected innovative strategies. 

    Most educational research includes small studies of students’ responses to classroom innovations, pre- and post-intervention knowledge assessments, and retrospective measures associated with nursing program completion and NCLEX success. 

    The publication of a new journal, The International Journal of Nursing Education Scholarship,3 testifies to the present emphasis on nursing education research. To validate the infusion of new strategies into traditional methods, we need designs that go beyond personal satisfaction or individual perceptions of learning. 

    Solid research designs, including quasi experimental studies with equivalent control and treatment groups, may best determine the effectiveness of creative teaching methods. I also ask you to share your experience of what worked and what didn’t. 

    This information is key to our evaluating the methods in this book and their use by nurse educators. The companion Web site for this book is the optimal forum for sharing and continued exploration of creative teaching strategies. 

    Your contributions to this Web site, from student responses to major research initiatives, will continue to build the foundation for evidence-based nursing education. Use this Web site to continue enhancing your teaching skills and, ultimately, your students’ learning experience. 

    Some Words About Motivation An appropriate way to close this book is with a common saying and a not so common addition to that phrase. In this book, I’ve tried to capture the art of innovative teaching. All of these creative strategies are intended to motivate learners and learning. 

    The old adage contends, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.” This phrase has been expanded: “but you can feed it salty oats to make it thirsty.” I hope the creative teaching strategies in this book will stimulate your students’ thirst for knowledge and skills. I wish you well as you continue to teach, and to enhance learning in, todays and tomorrow’s nursing professionals.

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