Nurse Educator Role - A Fifth Advanced Practice Nursing Speciality? - page 2

by VickyRN 25,137 Views | 20 Comments Senior Moderator

Advanced practice nurses (APNs) are defined as registered nurses "possessing advanced specialized clinical knowledge and skills through master's or doctoral education that prepares them for specialization, expansion, and... Read More


  1. 0
    I just finished my LPN classes, and I am planning on continuing my education. I am very seriously considering becoming a nurse educator. I live in a small city, and the program has difficulty finding instructors if someone leaves. I would hate to see even more difficulty in smaller cities such as mine. Not only do I live in a smaller city, but it has an air force base, therefore, a lot of turnover. I agree that educators need more recognition for the work they do, but with an impending shortage of nurses, I only see this complicating problems.
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    With the current role and identity issues associated with patient recognition of advanced practice nurses, I'm inclined to think llg's points are well founded. Also, given that primary care providers (and all those lobbying to be providers) are beginning to use similar processes, I'm also inclined to think fewer specialties may be in order. The specialties for advanced care and anesthesiology should probably be the only two going forward. The care provided by CNMs would roll up under advanced care in a similar fashion where an obstetrician is a physician and still referred to as doctor. Simplifying the provider landscape would benefit the patient and practitioner alike.
    Last edit by buransic on Jun 24, '09
    llg likes this.
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    Quote from buransic
    Simplifying the provider landscape would benefit the patient and practitioner alike.
    Exactly. It's too complicated as it is. I can see no benefit to anyone to making it more complicated -- except to the organizations that will make money from the testing and certification fees.
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    Nursing Educators do have a speciality. It is called Nursing Professional Development. I am certified in the field. A BSN is required to siit for the examination, plus other basic requirements must be met. If you pass the examination, offered by the ANCC, you become certified in Nursing Professional Development for a period of 5 years.

    The examination covers the following areas.

    Principles of Practice
    Educator Role
    Leader Role
    Consultant, Facilitator, and Change Agent Roles
    Researcher Role


    After 5 years you are required to renew your certification. In order to renew you must:

    Option A: Professional Development plus Practice Hours

    > Hold a current, active RN license in a state or territory of the United States or the professional,
    legally-recognized equivalent in another country;
    > Hold a current ANCC certification;
    > Complete the professional development requirements for your certification specialty which are:

    For this specialty only, professional development Category 1 equals 37.5 contact hours. If you double this category,
    then submit 75 contact hours.

    > Professional Development Categories 3 (presentations) and 4 (publications/research) cannot be doubled.

    Category 3 Presentations

    Present five different topics related to your certification specialty. Presentations that are a requirement of your employment
    are disqualified from this category. If you double this category, then you must present 10 different topics related to your
    certification specialty.
    These specialties may not double Category 3: Adult Health Clinical Nurse Specialist, Gerontological Nurse
    Practitioner, Gerontological Clinical Nurse Specialist, Nursing Professional Development.
    Audit: If your certification record is selected for audit, you will be required to submit supporting documents such as a copy
    of the presentation outline, abstract, letter accepting your abstract, or a letter inviting you to speak, and evidence that you actually presented the topic e.g. thank you letter on official letterhead.

    Category 4 Publication or Research

    Publication: Publish an article in a peer reviewed journal or a book chapter or develop education materials (such as a CD or
    web-based materials. Articles that are not yet published may not be used.) If you double this category, then you must have published
    two different articles in peer reviewed journals or developed two different education materials.
    Research: Serve as the primary investigator in an IRB-approved research project related to your certification specialty
    and completed during your five year certification period, or complete a master’s thesis or doctoral dissertation in your
    certification specialty. You can double this category by competing two IRB-approved research projects as the principleinvestigator.
    You can also double this category by completing one publication and one research project.
    Nursing Professional Development may not double Category 4.
    Audit: If your record is selected for an audit, you will be required to submit supporting documents to include either a copy
    of the table of contents and a copy of the entire article or chapter journal name with the date and your name or the copy of
    the IRB approval letter or IRB letter of exemption and a one-page abstract, no more than 250 words, describing the research
    study and findings, and the period the research was conducted.
    Category

    > Practice Hour Requirement: Completed 2,000 hours of practice in which your primary responsibilities included teaching,
    managing, or consulting in continuing education and/or staff development.

    > Complete a minimum of 1,000 practice hours in your certification role and specialty;
    > Pay the renewal fee.

    Option B: Professional Development plus Testing if you do not have practice hours in your certification specialty. This option only applies to those certifications in which an exam is available.

    > Hold a current, active RN license in a state or territory of the United States or the professional,
    legally-recognized equivalent in another country;
    > Hold a current ANCC certification;
    > Complete the professional development requirements for your specific certification, as identified above.
    > Pay the renewal fee;
    > Pass the exam

    I am the author of the Ethics and Legal section in the Core Curriculum Text, 3rd ed. In my opinion, certification in Nursing Professional Development definitely qualifies as an Advanced Nursing Practioner.

    I definitely support placing this as the 5th Advance Nursing Practice Level speciality.
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    But Tom123... that process you described is targeted for Staff Development people only. It is not geared toward nursing faculty in schools. That's the issue -- and that's one of the main points of (friendly) contention. The OP was focused more on nursing school faculty than on staff development educators. The many work settings and job specifics that fall under the heading of "education" would not fit easily under the same general heading as a 5th Advanced Nursing Practice specialty.

    The whole complicated process you described above would have to be completely overhauled to be so inclusive. I'm not sure that's a good idea. There is a big difference between a BSN-prepared unit educator and a PhD-prepared full professor at a research university.
    Heogog53 and VickyRN like this.
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    I am in 3rd year Bs, I was thinking yes, but after reading the comments on page 1, I think you give good points.
    We have a teacher who also a nurse practitioner, she is joining both together. So does she needs to have another certificate for being a teacher? No, she had enough teaching.
    VickyRN likes this.
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    Quote from Bahrain
    I am in 3rd year Bs, I was thinking yes, but after reading the comments on page 1, I think you give good points.
    We have a teacher who also a nurse practitioner, she is joining both together. So does she needs to have another certificate for being a teacher? No, she had enough teaching.

    You bring up a good point. The world of education (be it staff development or academic education) needs participation from those in clinical and administrative practice. People trying to maintain a practice while they teach have multiple certifications to try to maintain -- whose requirements may conflict with each other. If we were to add advanced practice licensure to the mix, what a mess it would be! It's already a mess, but that would just make it worse.

    As someone in that position, who teaches and maintains a practice ... I say it is just too much! Stop the credential madness! Let's get organized and create a credentialing system that makes sense and is reasonable to accomplish. With each specialty organization and state (each "interest group") developing its own system, we just get a horrible mess.
    Heogog53 and VickyRN like this.
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    I'm an oddball in terms of nursing credentials. I started out in Anthropology, graduated with honors as a BA, spent a year in graduate school before deciding that archeology just wasn't where I wanted to work. It has a great deal of wonderful things to recommend it, but there aren't a lot of jobs out there...
    Anyway, long story short, I looked into going to a BSN school and they were pretty excited aobut accepting me. Except that we moved. The nearest nursing school was a Diploma program. It was 33 months of extremely difficult work. It was harder than graduate school. I was PROUD to be a graduate of that Diploma Program.
    About that time, the push to have all nurses get there BSN's as an entry level reared its ugly head again. I tried two different schools in the area for a Baccalaureate Degree I DIDN'T want any part of. One university treated non BSN RN's like dirt; they called us "generic nurses" as if we were an off brand that smelled bad. It was a private school, so paying out that much money to be treated like dirt simply insulted me. Then my nursing school in congunction with the college across the street where we'd taken our college courses was setting up a BSN program. I had to CLEP roughly 60 credit hours, was given a curriculum to follow and I went off to do battle and get the BSN. The following year, after taking a one year social research class, I went back to see what was up next. "OH!!!! We dropped the second semester of that course as a requirement. Now you have to take these two courses and then you can start your three 7 hour clinical courses in nursing."
    WHAT???? How was I going to take those three classes as a fulltime employee with a baby? When was I going to fit that in? I gave up.

    Suddenly, the community college programs started churning out AA RNs, more BSN programs were put in place and the Diploma schools have been driven out of business.

    I looked aorund, wondering how I could get ahead with my education as a nurse and ran into two different barriers. The first one assumed that I was an Associate Degree nurse, so I HAD to take the last two years of college, as well as whatever courses the nursing school came up with. It mattered not one bit that I already had a BA from a fabulous school. The other barrier was something like this,"Ah...you have a BA and you're a DIPLOMA nurse???? TSK, TSK. Well, then, if you want to go to our MSN program, you have to take (hugely variable) x number of courses as pre-master's preparation before you can be an official MSN student."

    I gave up again for a long while. I've been an OR nurse for years, had my certificate, real life occurred and I couldn't keep it, but all I wanted to do was to work in the OR. Three and a half years ago, a back injury got in the way of that, and I started looking again.

    FINALLY!!!!!! I found an MSN program that accepted me as straight up grad student, no "bridge", no "your courses are too old you have to take at least 30 hours of classes over again, etc". Just a straight 36 hour nursing educator program, something I've wanted to do since starting nursing school.

    I just started my first course two weeks ago, and boy, am I rusty at being a student, am confused at being a student on line, and feel that my classmates are dazzlingly brilliant.

    But I'm excited about becoming what I see as an Advanced Practice Nurse. Now that I've read more information about the legal ramifications of actually being an APN, I think that nurse educators do NEED to be recognized for their contributions to keeping nursing going, whether at the university level, the nurse educator in the hospital level or staff development level. However, a BSN is not equal to an MSN nor whatever the PhD in nursing is being called these days.
    I do see the issues much more clearly because of this discussion- and I vote YES, nurse educators don't get enough recognition or encouragement to keep on teaching at the academic level.
    I hope, once I graduate with my MSN, to teach in an academic setting of some sort. I thought that the majority of my nursing instructors(most of whom has M.Ed's and other non MSN degrees cos they didn't exist back then) were the most dedicated, hardworking and wonderful people I'd ever come across.

    I want to be just like them when I grow up......
    msn10 and Moogie like this.
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    I`m currently working on my MSN and I`ve been split in between “nurse educator“ and FNP. I`ve been met with so much “chicken coop“ politics trying to be a nurse educator that I`m probably going to forget my dream of being an educator and turn to clinical practice.

    In my opinion, the pay and hassle nurse educator have to put up with is deplorable. Medical school educators are not striving to pay their bills, why should we? 

    The comments mentioned thus far, although thoughtful, remind me of the same “nurse vs. nurse“ crap that goes on every day. Nurse Educators already have a credential pathway and an unrecognized educational regimen; to deny educators a role as nurses, even know it`s a mix of education and nursing, is a slap in the face to the people who made you who you are today.
  10. 0
    Quote from 4treasures
    I am a recent RN, and I really appreciate this info, as I am beginning to work on my BSN with plans to go into nursing education eventually. I see the points that the PP's have made.

    I agree


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