Nursing Classroom Education: The big bang of powerpoint slavery - page 4

I have recently graduated and having a fair amount of time on my hands (jobless, thousands of applications filled out and resumes polished) I wouldn't mind giving an open, honest opinion of... Read More

  1. by   daisy78
    I think that ideally we integrate different methods of teaching (lecture, case studies, hands on in clinical and lab, discussions, simulations). I think you may have to realize that you are fairly unique in your expectations. My experience (as a student and instructor) is completely opposite of what you are stating. I do not like that I always have to go in with a Power Point and when I hand out a case study everyone rolls their eyes. I also think if you do have the opportunity to teach in the future, it will give you an entirely different perspective. I do have to prepare students for entry-level, safe practice. I do have to prepare them to take NCLEX. It is not always going to be exciting, unfortunately.
  2. by   ProfRN4
    Quote from daisy78

    My experience (as a student and instructor) is completely opposite of what you are stating. I do not like that I always have to go in with a Power Point and when I hand out a case study everyone rolls their eyes. I also think if you do have the opportunity to teach in the future, it will give you an entirely different perspective.
    This is what I often find as well. In fact, I recently forgot to post the PP for a lecture. and I put it up on the projector, and panic literally ensued. PowerPoint, in general, can be a very passive way of learning, where case studies force participation. This seems to be preferable in my experiences. In any given semester, the bulk of my students do not actively participate. The same 10% of the class will be the leaders of the group for a case study. My power points are quite sparse; purposely. If I put every single detail on them, there would be no reason for me to speak or to ask questions. I set the expectation that if something is incomplete (like the risk factors or s/s part of the slide is empty) that I expect them to come in with this info, so we can talk about it, not so I can tel it to them to copy down. This sometimes does not go over very well (evaluations have read "power points are incomplete"). But, if I did include every detail, or made them hundreds of slides (as some of my colleagues do) students would complain about that too.

    We can't win. And as an educator, I've come to realize that I cannot meet the learning needs of every student. After reading this and an educator discussion on another site, I'm actually thinking of retiring them altogether.
    Last edit by ProfRN4 on Apr 17, '13
  3. by   fsalazar1
    Hello. I must say that I thoroughly agree with your post. I can relate to your nursing school experience, as I was often in classes where I was being talked to instead of taught.

    I am both a teacher and an RN working in the ICU, and I love working with students and patients. I do value the art and science of educating students, but I felt like God was calling me towards a higher calling in nursing. I went into it reluctantly at first because I've grown up with RN's all around me (including my mother, best friend, cousins, family friends, ranging from diploma degrees all the way up to PhDs in nursing). However, I realized that my love to serve and help others would suceed me, and I couldn't run away from this calling. Anyways, because of my relationship with God and reverencing HIM, I enrolled in a nursing program and ended up being fascinated with it! I didn't like it at first because of the educators I've dealt with, but I can definitely say that nursing has changed me as a person for the better.

    As far as most nursing educators today, it does feel like they aren't as prepared or care at all about what they are presenting (or how they come across in lecture). I think it also has a lot to do with nurses becoming educators with little experience. You can't teach anyone just off of book knowledge; you have to know what you are doing in and out and still be willing to learn more as a nurse educator (in my oppinion). Its hard to sit around and wonder what mood a teacher will be in, whether they really understand the topic, or if they just are milking this job. I personally think that most educators should incorporate different learning strategies within their lectures. Kinetic, auditory and visual learning should be utilized. The powerpoint is a form of visual combined with auditory via the lecture. The hands on aspect is found in labs and clinicals, but nursing school is relatively short and not everyone catches on quickly. However, that is the reality of nursing - get the info, learn it, do it! The powerpoints being read to us is a disservice and depending on the educator, they aren't receptive to your questions or are pressed for time outside of class to help or explain the information further. It's just not conducive to each individual student. I can sit and listen to you talk for hours, study and pass the class, but put me in front of a patient and I freeze! The opposite side is the student who is terrible in lecture and barely passes exams, but is a NATURAL on the floor, picks up skills quickly and is a hands on genius. There is nothing wrong with being better at one thing over the other, but if you know where your strengths and weaknesses lie, then its up to you to fix them. Nursing education is out there even after you've been in the field. Taking the time to learn how you learn will help us more.

    Being an educator comes with the commitment to learn how to teach, so with nursing, you have to be committed to learning how to help others learn. Even though I am a teacher and an RN, I am not saying that being on faculty is easy or that all nursing educators aren't great. I am not a perfect teacher, as I had my struggles with reaching my own students in my own classroom when I started educating. I do respect dedicated nurse educators; we wouldn't be where we are without them. I'm thinking about getting my MSN in Nurse Education myself. I do know how hard it is to reach everyone, but I also don't want to use that as a crutch to shoot the breeze and read to my students. I want to know what I know and share it the best I can to my one day nursing students. I don't want to lose the passion as many feel that their educators have. Thank you for reading!
  4. by   WineCountryRN
    Now this is something I can use! Great ideas! As an educator, I struggle with keeping my 90 minute lecture interesting and engaging. Balancing a lot of content with a lot of students is no easy task. My teaching is like my cooking some of the 'stuff' has been canned and then I spice it up. Is it OK for the instructor to discuss one topic in depth, allow for interactive activities at the expense of not covering the other 60% of the topic/chapter?
    I am am going to check out my Mac program now. Thank you!
    Quote from marycarney
    What you provided your students is called a 'graphic organizer' in the homeschooling world.

    And I know a chemistry instructor who provides these to her class of remedial students with tremendous results.
  5. by   AOx1
    I realize that this thread is older, but will still respond. I do not use PowerPoint. I watched several instructors use it and noted that even when used well, many students don't take any notes or take very few. I use more active learning methods. I use models to help students better understand patho. We integrate brief simulations (ex-what happens to the sim if I miscalculate and give an overdose of digoxin?why is correctly calculating so important? I demonstrate correct assessment and expect return demonstration. The students must practice the appropriate skills that go along with the lecture. Before a lecture, the students get a sheet with assigned reading, key objectives and skills to guide reading, and key "testable" topics.

    The caveat is that the students can't hide or play on the internet during my class. At any moment, I might ask a student to demonstrate key assessment prior to starting a transfusion. Another two show us how to fill out the paperwork. Another group may be practicing spiking blood and correctly setting the pump. Their first few weeks, the students were unprepared and horrified that they wouldn't get their nice pre-digested Power-Point with all the notes. This is a typical reaction their first semester. Now they love my classes and the majority are prepared. Their "quizzes"come as questions throughout the class in NCLEX format, and most do very well.

    Some reasons why this is not common:
    It takes me about 15 hours to prepare for a lecture of this nature vs an hour or two to make a PowerPoint.
    You have to be able to put up with initial "but, I just want a PowerPoint!" whining.
    The prof probably needs tenure to withstand the initial negative course evaluations. One of mine said "This teacher made us do most of the work instead of just telling us what would be on the test! I was forced to read my book!" (I framed that comment.)
    You have to constantly think of creative ways to communicate the ideas.
    You must stay current in your own specialty. I work four shifts per month in addition to working as a full-time educator, completing my doctorate, and taking care of my family. I have little free time. I am paid for only forty hours a week, but spend closer to 60 hrs to make sure my students get the best, and yet I make less than I did after one year as a BSN. Educator salaries are laughable, and burnout is common when you give it your all and receive no financial reward. To be honest, I love having a flow of students who thank me for preparing them for practice, but wish I were adequately paid.
    Last edit by AOx1 on Oct 23, '13 : Reason: Typo
  6. by   trishmsn
    As mentioned, the Power Points that "go with" each section in the textbooks are available from the publisher, in a generic form. I have always made it a point to add in illustrating pictures and diagrams (off of a simple net search for images) as well as change fonts, colors, and layout to emphasize the salient points. A good educator has the test prepared BEFORE s/he starts a unit, and knows exactly what points are important to the concepts. I usually pause on a picture I have added to expand on the concept, so that the students are NOT staring at words or tables already in their books. [They also all know what something in RED or with an asterick darn well better know this slide/table/idea inside out and backwards!] I also bring in ideas from sections we have already covered to illustrate the bigger picture....just because we did cardiac five weeks ago does NOT mean that we will not talk about how diabetes changes blood vessels and the difference between microvascular and macrovasular effects!
  7. by   Kelly_the_Great
    I stopped reading after page 3, please forgive me if I repeat what others have previously posted.

    Great topic & great idea about using the report method to engage. I think having an "engagement" activity is probably as important as having the goal, objectives, activities and evaluation methods determined when making a lesson.

    I myself try to use methods of engagement before and/or throughout lesson plans to emphasize the real-life importance of the material that's being covered. For instance, I showed a short video concerning a child's death due to a med error prior to teaching household to metric conversions using the dimensional analysis method to a class one time. They were able to connect the importance of accuracy to that of a life lost that was full of potential.

    Generally speaking, I think the majority of lecture should be for discussion and clarification. It should NOT be to memorize the information for the students. Sadly, that is what most of the students expect and we are left having to teach to the lowest standard for the most part.

    It's hard to branch out and engage (there's that word again) in higher learning activities when the students aren't equipping themselves with prerequisite knowledge (i.e. at least reading the chapter summaries) prior to class. There's a lot of material to cover in a short amount of time and, unfortunately, most students do not participate in any form of independent learning/discovery, thus, an INTERACTIVE lecture is very challenging because interactivity is precisely that: inter = between two things. When only one side of the equation has done any of the prior work leading to lecture, you're left with having to read to them and throw in scenarios, videos, activities when the time allows.

    Before you say, "I read prior to class," just know (and if you're honest with yourself, you already know this anyway) most of your fellow classmates do not. So, yeah, we could be having an intellectual discussion about the material and participate in more meaningful learning but the rest of your class would whine that the teaching is over their heads and half the class would probably fail.
  8. by   RogerHimelstein
    I am a new educator, and I can feel your pain. The flip side of your problem is that for every hour of classroom lecture, we spend 4-5 hours of prep time. Powerpoint and other like presentations are just a tool to get the information across. It is still the job of the class facilitator to present the information in a way that the majority of the learners get the most out of what is put out. If not all that prep time was a waste.
  9. by   TRAVELNURSE2
    sorry no job but when are you enrolling for nurse educator program? changes are good!!
  10. by   A&Ox6
    I'm a senior nursing student, but I tutor first semester students as well. I currently tutor in dosage calculations, but I have also done individual and group fundamentals review as well as teaching students techniques for building great care plans.

    I have seen that with dosage calculation, it's best to teach with things they know. Since these students haven't dealt with IVs and IM/SQ reconstitution... I give examples in regular life and then show them that it's the same problem. For example, if I'm tutoring someone who has kids or little siblings, I use formula to teach reconstitution. They know formula, so they can see that 2 oz water makes a bottle with 2.5 oz formula for example with a new strength. I also use formula to teach calculating TPN/enteral nutrition.

    I use baking cakes to teach conversion. For example, this is the recipe, but you only have a teaspoon or you only have a shot glass. Rewrite the recipe. Tell them their friend from _______ country has a baby and says baby weighs ____ kg, how big is baby in lbs.

    I find that students want to learn, and teaching students so that they can understand is the best way to ENGAGE them.

    As a side note, I've noticed that many students who have difficulty with care plans or nursing process were never taught how it works. Sure they were told to buy a NANDA I or a care plan book, but so many of them don't realize that they shouldn't be making things up. The nursing model follows the patients' manifestations, not what they should present with since they have a certain dx in their chart. Of course it doesn't help when professors want students to write their care plans without seeing the patient. It also is unhelpful when professors make up dxs.

    The best advice I got from my professors and that I give to my students is to buy a nursing dx book (not NANDA I) and to practice 5th grade math before starting the program.
  11. by   Lackofrespect
    Get used to it, when you are a nurse you will get 3 hours of annual ed on computer via powerpoint and short quiz, then if you are really lucky, you get to go to in house education, where people with MSN and Phd will read a power point to you. I have my BSN, I know there are other forms of education out there, not sure why nursing professionals with advanced degrees are so lazy.
  12. by   Rose_Queen
    Quote from Lackofrespect
    Get used to it, when you are a nurse you will get 3 hours of annual ed on computer via powerpoint and short quiz, then if you are really lucky, you get to go to in house education, where people with MSN and Phd will read a power point to you. I have my BSN, I know there are other forms of education out there, not sure why nursing professionals with advanced degrees are so lazy.
    Or is it that nursing educators, including those in staff education, are stretched far too thin? I am responsible for over 500 people- completion of orientation (average number of people on orientation at a time is 15-20 scattered over 3 separate hospitals in 15 different departments), annual and quarterly competency validation (which has to be done 1 on 1), being a resource for other departments that use our ORs and need to know what can and can't be done/how to work within the OR environment, maintaining all the paperwork that goes along with orientation and competency, providing staff education monthly, lining up education from outside vendors, maintaining and updating all of the policies for the department, working with student surgical technologists and student nurses and medical students on how to not contaminate sterile fields/how to scrub/how to prep/how to walk around, and so much more.

    It's not laziness to utilize PowerPoint as a tool- it's a decent way that hits the most staff and can be done in the limited/non-existent time that I as an educator have to work with.

    Want to change it? Advocate for your staff educators to get the supplies and time that they need. I need at least another full time educator, some updated training supplies for staff to practice with (I'm pretty sure several of our supplies are older than I am). But don't dare think that PowerPoints are used just because educators are lazy. I'd say your username is quite appropriate there.
  13. by   jennycRN
    As a student, I hate 'death by PowerPoint' as much as the next person. I also desire to be challenged and engaged in the classroom. But now on the flip side as an adjunct instructor I also understand more of how the nursing education world works. Reality is that students learn differently, many haven't read or understood the material prior to lecture. In addition we have to ensure consistent presentation of standardized material across multiple sections of a course. Also, developing your "own" material takes considerable prep time, often over multiple semesters, and is made more difficult when instructors are bounced from course to course.

    So, yes, I love teaching, and like most instructors I would like students to find my class to be worthwhile and interesting. Maybe one day you will become the entertaining instructor you wish that you had. But you will also understand the multiple challenges and pressures involved in educating nursing students.