Finding your own clinical instructors? Finding your own clinical instructors? | allnurses

Finding your own clinical instructors?

  1. 1 I am almost completed with my MSN in nursing education through Walden University. They are starting up an FNP (also adult/gerontology) program in the fall.

    I'm extremely interested, but not sure if it's the norm to have to locate your own preceptors???

    What is everyone's experience from what they have found or done?
  2. 24 Comments

  3. Visit  llg profile page
    4
    It is the norm -- and it is a disgrace. An increasing number of schools are requiring students to find their own preceptors -- to provide their education for no recognition or renumeration. Meanwhile, the school collects your money. Schools should be ashamed of themselves and the profession should not allow it.

    But regretably, the practice has become the norm.
    CCRNDiva, BCgradnurse, Purple_Scrubs, and 1 other like this.
  4. Visit  Pug RN profile page
    0
    That is really sad. The programs are all so expensive, and it seems like this takes so minimal of an effort from the schools and puts it upon the shoulders of someone who is already attending a strenuous program and attempting to balance "real life" as well.

    Although this is not what I wanted to hear, it makes me think that this program should be fine, and I will just have to jump that hurdle when I get to it. I'll need to do a little more research and wait for some more responses.
  5. Visit  elkpark profile page
    2
    Quote from Pug RN
    That is really sad. The programs are all so expensive, and it seems like this takes so minimal of an effort from the schools and puts it upon the shoulders of someone who is already attending a strenuous program and attempting to balance "real life" as well.

    Although this is not what I wanted to hear, it makes me think that this program should be fine, and I will just have to jump that hurdle when I get to it. I'll need to do a little more research and wait for some more responses.
    I would encourage you to not wait to "jump that hurdle when (you) get to it." There have been posters here in the past who were unable to complete their degrees (or were significantly delayed in graduating) because they had completed all their coursework but couldn't find preceptors for the clinicals. On the other threads discussing this topic (there are plenty; have you reviewed them?), people who have been through this process always urge potential students to get their preceptors more or less lined up before they even start their programs.

    It can be a real challenge to find preceptors, since precepting students slows the practitioner down significantly and they are typically being asked to do this for no compensation.
    CCRNDiva and llg like this.
  6. Visit  Pug RN profile page
    0
    I can understand that, I am actually having a difficult time locating a preceptor for my msn in nursing education, which is a significantly shorter practicum.

    I will have to go and look at some of the other posts. I am actually new to the NP boards, so thanks for directing me.
  7. Visit  myelin profile page
    5
    If I were you I would only consider programs that provide preceptors. Many, many students on here were just like you, and assumed they'd deal with the problem when it came. Then, when time came to find a preceptor, they were screwed. If you don't already have someone in mind who has agreed to precept you, I'd caution against assuming that you'll find someone.

    Also, what concerns me the most about these programs, is where is the quality control? I don't understand how institutions can be fine with having random people teach their students without investigating the facility first, the individuals,etc.
    CCRNDiva, PacoUSA, BCgradnurse, and 2 others like this.
  8. Visit  Tinabeanrn profile page
    0
    Very normal unfortunately :/.
  9. Visit  elkpark profile page
    3
    Quote from myelin
    Also, what concerns me the most about these programs, is where is the quality control? I don't understand how institutions can be fine with having random people teach their students without investigating the facility first, the individuals,etc.
    This is my concern, as well. What kind of idea (or control) do the schools have of what caliber clinical education the individual student is getting? In my graduate program (a CNS program, not an NP program, but the NP tracks operated the same way), every clinical instructor was a full- or part-time faculty member at the school -- they had been vetted during the hiring process, they were integrated into the school faculty, and their performance was monitored on an ongoing basis. How does a school know that the local preceptor a student lined up isn't some kind of slacker who takes lots of shortcuts (or is just an all-round poor quality clinician) and is teaching the student all kinds of bad habits and poor practices?

    Clearly, these schools just don't care about that possibility, or what kind of education students are getting in their program. I find that completely unacceptable, and would never attend a program like that.

    A big part of the problem, IMO, is that too many students want the convenience of attending an online program and arranging local clinicals, and they don't seem to care that much about the caliber and rigor of the education they're receiving (and paying for). If people stopped applying for the programs in which you arrange your own preceptors locally, schools would have to make other arrangements.
    CCRNDiva, myelin, and llg like this.
  10. Visit  Tinabeanrn profile page
    0
    Just my 2 cents, its not only online schools. I attended school on campus and they had a little bit of both. They preferred for the students to find their own preceptors, but they would arrange clinicals for you if push came to shove. As far as the quality control goes, at my school they had mid term evaluations and end of semester evaluations of all of our preceptors and clinical sites which asked if the student would recommend the preceptor or the site. We were also told to contact our clinical faculty if we were having any isssues. A couple of students did that and were placed elsewhere. The instructors also did site visits and saw us at each clinical site and shadowed us during visits to make sure we were up to par.

    I think they allow the students to pick their preceptors because they assume the students will find suitable preceptors. Ya know? In my general area I can name 5 on campus programs of well know universities, and only One arranges clinicals for you. I'm not saying its right, I'm just saying.

    And it is concerning. It seemed like some of the students in my class had better experiences than others based of their clinicals. That doesn't seem fair. Sorry if there are any typos...Im so sleepy .
  11. Visit  myelin profile page
    5
    And this is why it is so important for NP students to actually care about the reputation and quality of their program - not just whether or not the program is "flexible" or online. Students need to stop attending programs that do not provide preceptors, period. How can it be acceptable for some students to have good clinicals and other students to have crappy ones?

    It seems crazy to me that schools will just "trust" their students to find adequate training. Isn't that the school's responsibility? The state of NP education is just appalling. I think as more and more schools churn out NPs, things are going to tighten up and jobs will be harder to find. You're best going with a program from a reputable university (not for-profit!), which should set up your clinicals.
    CCRNDiva, BCgradnurse, mrmedical, and 2 others like this.
  12. Visit  Tinabeanrn profile page
    1
    I think the bigger issue is that people dont want to precept students. It is not easy to find ppl that are willing to do it for some reason. My school had a long list of preceptors and still would not have enough and made us find some of our own. I wish that NPs were more willing to take on students and be mentors.
    tadahh99 likes this.
  13. Visit  Pug RN profile page
    2
    I wish it was that easy that students could stop attending the programs that don't provide preceptors. I really do, because I would be all over that.

    But when such a vast amount of the schools out there are going this route, and people like myself are wanting to have school wrapped up before their child goes off to school themself, this becomes quite the challenge.

    I attend a reputable school currently, as do friends of mine that are in different FNP programs, many at state non-profit universities, and they still need to get their own preceptors.

    So, I agree that it is difficult and not right to have to locate your own preceptors, but unfortunately, it may be the only choice for some men and women that could make excellent NP's and also figure out a way to work their programs into their work schedules.

    I have struggled the past year to attend school full time for my MSN in nursing education, work full time, and raise my just turned one child. I have a 3.95 overall GPA. However, I was dependent on a school that was super flexible and online to be able to accomplish this task. I have done well enough to be invited into Sigma Theta Tau. I am looking at needing to do the same kind of program, where at least the classroom portion is online, in order to accomplish this last step in my dream.
    tadahh99 and Tinabeanrn like this.
  14. Visit  Tinabeanrn profile page
    0
    Good points Pug RN. Go for it! All you can give is your best. Start finding preceptors now. Make sure they are well rounded and will be able to give you the experiences you need. Try family practice or internal medicine offices. You will do fine . I have faith

close
close