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TigerBlood01 2,156 Views

Joined Oct 9, '09. Posts: 32 (34% Liked) Likes: 23

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  • May 15 '15

    At the beginning of the semester, we go over the clinical course syllabus and I give the students a list of written rules/expectations for the course. Among them are:

    1. No cell phones, texting, or personal laptops allowed during clinical. We do clinical on a psychiatric unit so they are not allowed for privacy/confidentiality reasons. Any student caught texting or using any type of technology gets a verbal warning first and then an academic warning if he/she continues to not follow the hospital's and school's policies.

    2. Tardiness is not tolerated. I tell the students to treat clinical like a real job. I give them the example that if they were working on a unit and just showed up for clinical late without notifying the instructor or staff, they would probably be fired. Clinical is training for the real world. I have never had any issues with chronic tardiness from students.

    3. I emphasize professional behavior in their evaluations and add or take off points for it. It is part of their course grade. I developed a grading rubric and take off points for tardiness, disruptive behavior, participation, and other criteria. I have not had any issues since I started doing this.

    4. I do not tolerate any bullying or any form of horizontal violence from students towards others (including myself) or staff trying to bully students on the floor. If it does occur, it is nipped in the bud very quickly and professionally. This "nurses that eat their young" mentality is old school and needs to die if the profession is going to advance in a positive direction. I explain to them that it is difficult for others to treat us as professionals when you see a nurse gossiping, backbiting, ect. another nurse. Also, a nurse doing this is poor role model for others.

    5. Absences like an illness need a written excuse from a doctor or other provider. I had a student ask me if he could miss clinical so he could go to a social event. I said "sure you can go, but it will be an unexcused absence." He did not go to the event. I feel that when a student registers for a class, it is like a contract between the instructor and student. I am expected to be at XYZ time and date every week and so is the student.

    I know I am a strict instructor, but I am very fair. I don't care if a student's dad is the CEO of some big company...he is going to earn that A just like everyone else. My students know what to expect from me and I let them know what their expectations are in clinical. I challenge them to learn and raise the bar high. I try to help them get prepared for the real world so they won't be overwhelmed or drowning as a new grad. It is a very rewarding job...just wish it paid more.