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Clinical instructor offended me during clinicals


I am graduating in a few months from nursing school. The clinical I am in right now is my last one. I never had problems with my clinicals and clinical professors. They always said I would make a great nurse. However, the clinical professor for this clinical is different. When I'm put on the spot all of a sudden, I tend to stutter. I think she took my stuttering as a language barrier. I do not have a language barrier. I am Asian with an Asian name, however, I came to America when I was 2 years old. I speak and understand English fluently. During clinicals today, we were going over assignments she wanted us to do. One particular assignment was something half of my clinical group members never heard of. The other half had already done it once with another professor. She asks one of the members to explain it to the members who did not know what it was. After it was explained, she turns straight at me, and asks me if I understood. I told her yes. I felt very offended because she thought I did not understand. I am also in the quiet side, but I am very attentive. I can't just suddenly change my personality. I've accepted that I am quiet, but this does not mean I am a awful nurse. I just felt terrible and embarrased.

Sun0408, ASN, RN

Specializes in Trauma Surgical ICU. Has 4 years experience.

I'm sorry but I am not seeing a problem. Have a talk with her so she knows you understand and speak english very well. I see this as a misunderstanding. I also think you are reading too much into this just from what you wrote, her making sure you understood the instructions/assignment for the day does not = a awful nurse.

The instructor was wrong to assume but you did nothing to correct her, have a talk with her just kinda FYI. If there is more to the story and more issues with this instructor maybe you can talk to someone or keep your head low for the last few clinicals. Sometimes talking to someone helps, sometimes it doesn't.


Specializes in Telemetry, OB, NICU. Has 4 years experience.

Has your instructor never heard you talk or you have never talked to each other for anything? I mean, there are all kinds of communication going on between students and instructors at clinicals. I don't get that. I would create an environment where she can hear you talk a few sentences then.

Daisy_08, BSN, RN

Has 5 years experience.

I think your taking her comment the wrong way. Maybe she thought you weren't paying attention, or make a mistake on somthing similar. I wouldn't read too much into it based on what you wrote.

I have had done to me and seen much worse by teachers to students. Unless she starts bringing it up often and in front of pts and staff or mocking you, I would take what she said at face value. Your so close to being done!. Keep your nose down, don't give her any reason not to like you, pass clinical and graduate!

Double-Helix, BSN, RN

Specializes in PICU, Sedation/Radiology, PACU. Has 9 years experience.

While I can understand why it might have been embarrassing to feel like the teacher called you our specifically, implying that you aren't as capable as the other students, nothing that you wrote suggests that she had any malicious intent. If you're right that she she does assume that English may be your second language (you stated you're quiet, so perhaps the time you stutered was the only time she has heard you speak more than a few sentences at a time), than it appears she was only trying to make sure you understood the assignment. That would mean that she wants you to be successful.

If it makes you feel better, I doubt the other students thought anything about her remark. They probably didn't even notice.

If it would help you, you can have a conversation with this instructor and explain that you occasionally stutter when asked something you are unsure about. This should both clear the air as well as show her that you do speak English fluently.