Do you think a nursing instructor should have acute care experience?

  1. Please help: I have a nagging question regarding becoming a nursing instructor. Do you feel that nursing instructors should have acute care experience? My experience is in geriatrics and community health for about 10 years. I would like to teach community health, gerontology, health assessment, fundamentals of nsg. What would you think if your instructor didn't have acute care experience?
    •  
  2. 18 Comments

  3. by   fergus51
    I think it's ok as long as they aren't teaching about acute nursing. You need to have a realistic sense of hospital life if you are going to be telling new nurses what to do there. If you are staying in your area of expertise, I can't see a problem.

    I should say, the worst instructors I had were the ones who had acute care experience but it was so outdated that it was useless. I had one instructor who hadn't done a shift on the floor since the 60s.
  4. by   SandyB
    Just don't teach acute care....in my BSN program I had more than one school nurse teach community health courses. So go for it!
  5. by   bluesky
    My program is soooo short on instructors that we have the same instructors over and over again. Most of them are GNPs. A psych NP is teaching my critical care/med surg senior practicum and she's doing OK so far.
  6. by   gerinurse10
    Thanks! You are already making me feel better. I have my application out for a MSN program with an education concentration. I'm excited. Just hope there is a job for me when I graduate.
  7. by   VickyRN
    I say go for it! We have quite a variety of background with our instructors and you would be surprised how well everyone is doing, even on clinical floors that are quite different from our areas of expertise. We are constantly learning, right along with our students.
    Just hope there is a job for me when I graduate.
    Come on down here to NC--you'll have your pick of any cc across the state :chuckle
  8. by   Alnamvet
    I have always been of the opinion that most nursing instructors are office weenies with minimal exposure to the real world of nursing; everything, and anything I have learned was from OJT and physicians.
  9. by   Dinith88
    I think you're fully qualified to teach those aspects of nursing. I agree with fergus..

    Alnamvet..office weenies?? lol
  10. by   CarVsTree
    My clinical instructor just got her FNP, but has been a school nurse for the past 20 years. She was/is HORRIBLE. She sits in the conference room doing paperwork that she should have done at home. When asked to verify something she never gets around to doing it. She is not with us when we pour/pass meds. I took my first irregular HR BP and was very unsure of my result. I told her this and she says well "let's chart it." I said, "well can you verify it first? I'm not comfortable charting it." "Well we'll just chart it and then I'll verify it." She NEVER VERIFIED IT! :angryfire He was bi-geminy(sp?) and just really didn't know because of the very irregular HR.

    I think she took the job so she could have recent acute care experience to get her FNP job in private practice. Just like magic, she got a job halfway through the semester. I have no problem with her getting acute care experience if she needs it. But, not at the expense of my education and "my" patients' safety. I did report her to my Nursing 101 instructor and she is going to talk to her. I doubt she'll be back for another semester.

    But, for the grace of our primary nurses on the units. They have taken us under their wings and taught us, shown us, and let us do what we should be doing in clinical. Risking their licenses for our benefit. I rated my clinical instructor all 1's and 2's on the CI evaluation form. We also got to rate the facility so of course I raved about them nurses!!! Whoot!

    Anyway, be good to your students. Give them the education they need to "grow up" to be d*** good nurses one day!

    Thanks for letting me vent!
  11. by   mattsmom81
    I think the fact you are asking this likely means you will be a great instructor. I remember my favorite instructors were those who had actually done nursing recently.ANY kind of hands on nursing...LOL! You have. There are lots of different areas of expertise and your students can learn about community health from you. Maybe not about hospital routines but community health nurses are skilled in physical asessments, know community resources, etc etc.Good luck and bet you do great.
  12. by   mitchsmom
    I have to say, all of my instructors seem to have a lot of varied experience so far. Most have been nursing for 20, 30 years and have worked all kinds of areas. One of mine I think has a more limited field of interest, but she teaches in that field so it's fine. I think it's fine as long as you are in your field or feel confident about learning what you need to know to teach the students. I could see myself doing the same thing one day (and I plan on heading straight to L&D).
  13. by   gerinurse10
    I wouldn't dream of trying to teach an acute care class. I want to stay in my area of expertise. I have gone back and forth on the acute care issue. Almost had myself convinced to go work a year in a hospital. I might, just to see how it is out there now. How can you be a good professor if you haven't lived the life you are teaching? I have been looking for more specialized grad courses in community health. Do they teach them in 2 year schools? I can't even remember some of the experiences I had in my program. I think I erased nursing school from my memory. It's like giving birth, give it a few years and you can't even remember the pain.:chuckle
  14. by   VickyRN
    Quote from gerinurse10
    I wouldn't dream of trying to teach an acute care class. I want to stay in my area of expertise. I have gone back and forth on the acute care issue. Almost had myself convinced to go work a year in a hospital. I might, just to see how it is out there now. How can you be a good professor if you haven't lived the life you are teaching? I have been looking for more specialized grad courses in community health. Do they teach them in 2 year schools? I can't even remember some of the experiences I had in my program. I think I erased nursing school from my memory. It's like giving birth, give it a few years and you can't even remember the pain.:chuckle
    Rule #1 in teaching (or nursing in general): don't ever say never! Think you are selling yourself WAAAAY too short, Gerinurse. A LOT of what you have experienced in community health is relevant on any floor in the hospital.

close