1st impression/clinical instructor


What are some ways to get on the clinical instructor's good side?


44 Posts

Specializes in Respiratory, Med/Surg.

Listen to them, do what you are supposed to do, act professional. Pretty much just act like you are starting a new job.


1 Article; 1,796 Posts

Specializes in Gerontology, nursing education.

I agree with the above poster. Be courteous and respectful to your peers, patients, the staff, and your instructor. Address him/her the way that he/she prefers. Get your work done on time and if you have questions or concerns, don't hesitate to ask your instructor for some help.

Be realistic in expecting feedback or answers to emails. In some schools, there are policies that instructors will answer email within a certain timeframe, say 24 to 48 hours. Please make sure that your instructor has your correct phone number, the number that is easiest to use to reach you. (Yes, I have had students give me their home numbers when they live on campus, far from home, and who have given me inaccurate cell phone numbers---it's tough to get ahold of these students when clinicals have to be cancelled due to weather emergencies.)

Adhere to the attendance policy. If you need to miss a mandatory class, skills lab, or clinical, let your instructor know ahead of time. Please be aware that some schools allow for absences and others do not. No-shows will not impress anyone.

Please pay attention during lectures and discussion. Yes, lectures can be a bit tedious. We see your eyes glaze over and, frankly, we would rather be doing something else than talking at a bunch of students who don't want to be in that lecture hall at that moment. But please---try to be engaged. Don't pretend to be taking notes in class with your laptop but you're really going to eBay or Facebook or Failblog. Don't text your friends when you're in class.

Be honest. Adhere to your school's standards of academic honesty. Don't copy and paste things off the Internet and put them in your paper as if they were your own words. Credit your sources. And remember, Wikipedia is NOT a scholarly reference.

Tell your instructor the truth---don't lie and tell him/her what you think he/she wants to hear. If you're struggling with a concept and need a bit more help---say something. If you are feeling unchallenged in clinicals, don't just whine to your friends about how boring the practicum is---tell your instructor that you need to be pushed. Don't say one thing to your instructor's face and another thing behind her back. Believe it or not, we are people with feelings, too, and we can be hurt by gossip or students who try to play faculty members off of each other.

And lastly---don't worry about impressing your instructor. I don't want students who are concerned with impressing me. I want students who are eager to learn and willing to work hard.

The best to you on your journey!

llg, PhD, RN

13,469 Posts

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development. Has 46 years experience.

Be prepared for class/clinical. Know your stuff and use good thinking and problem-solving skills. In other words, don't be an airhead. Act like an adult and take it all seriously.

Politeness, courtesy, etc. is always a virtue, but there is no need to "suck up." Be "low maintenance" and avoid being a "drama queen" and/or demanding special attention.

Instructors appreciate students who are well-prepared and on top of their game more than anything else.

Specializes in Critical Care, Emergency Medicine, Flight.

bake her cookies!

haha...just like the other said..its like a new job.. be professional and cheerful :)


199 Posts

instuctors like when students act like responsible adults.

the PPs are spot on - but one thing that I did not see mentioned was proper use of cell phones on the clinical floor. we have had specific instruction to NOT, I repeat, NOT use cell phones while on the floor. not just once, but several times, the edict has come from admin of both the school and hospitals.

seems pretty straight forward to me, but for some reason, there are several classmates who didn't get the memo. they continue to text, make calls, etc.

a couple of students have been called on this, their responses are that

they were looking up a drug, or

had a family emergency, or

the dog got loose and they're trying to remedy the situation, etc....

I'm sure there are legitimate calls, but to most who see it happening, the report is that they're on facebook, twitter, IM, and playing games.

granted, I am the same age as, or older than, most of my clinical instructors. I find it appalling that someone would lie to a teacher to their face, talk back, argue, or otherwise demonstrate disrespect.