Work experience before Nurse Education?

Posted
by danu3 danu3 Member

This may be obvious, but it is not obvious to me.

It seemed that if one want to go into Nursing Education, one would need a few years of clinical experience under his/her belt. One question is how many years of these expereince should one have before going for a Nurse Education program? If I am wrong on this, that is one can can straight into Nurse Education from a BSN, then I would like to know that too.

-Dan

VickyRN, MSN, DNP, RN

Specializes in Gerontological, cardiac, med-surg, peds. Has 16 years experience. 105 Articles; 5,349 Posts

Definitely work experience would be preferred. I am very surprised to see no prior experience requirement for the Nurse Educator program at the school in which I am pursuing my degree. These are the requirements for the MSN concentrations at my university:

Admissions:

Admission to the Master of Science in Nursing program requires the student to meet the minimum admission requirements for graduate study as established by the university and the following requirements established by the School of Nursing.

A baccalaureate degree in nursing from an NLN-accredited program.

A minimum GPA of 2.50 in undergraduate studies and a minimum GPA of 3.00 in nursing major.

Acceptable score on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Miller Analogies Test (MAT) within the past five years.

Currently licensed to practice as a registered nurse (RN) in North Carolina. (The out-of-state student must procure a North Carolina RN license before enrolling in clinical courses).

A one-page statement describing the applicants' interest in graduate study, career goals, and the MSN degree's relationship to those goals.

Three professional references.

A personal interview with a member of the graduate faculty.

For the FNP concentration, one year of experience as a RN and at least one reference from someone knowledgeable about the candidate's nursing practice.

For nurse midwifery, one year of experience as an RN (labor & delivery preferred) and at least one reference from someone knowledgeable about the candidate's nursing practice.

For Neonatal Nurse Practitioner applicants, two years of current practice experience in a critical care environment for high risk neonatal care is required.

For Nurse Anesthesia applicants, one year of adult critical care experience, completion of a supplemental admissions packet, and an interview with the Nurse Anesthesia Admissions Committee.

A course in statistics with a grade of C or higher, an undergraduate research course, and computer literacy are prerequisites for all concentrations in nursing. A course in basic accounting is a prerequisite for the clinical service administration concentration.

Audreyfay

Audreyfay

Specializes in Everything but psych!. Has 31 years experience. 754 Posts

VickyRN....thorough explanation. I agree. Nothing more need be said.

danu3

danu3

621 Posts

Thanks for the info. Now a follow up question. I see the min requriement posted earlier for one of the school.

My question is from your own experience (not the school's min requirement), what would be the number of actual RN experience before one should try to go into Nursing Education? That is, what are the number of years one should have under one's belt before one would make a good Nurse Educator?

-Dan

VickyRN, MSN, DNP, RN

Specializes in Gerontological, cardiac, med-surg, peds. Has 16 years experience. 105 Articles; 5,349 Posts

I would say at least 2 to 3 fulltime years in one's specialty. How can one effectively teach something without that experience?

Despite the lack of experience requirement for the educational track, most if not all schools of nursing require prospective instructors to have at least 2 years' worth of clinical experience and expertise.

danu3

danu3

621 Posts

Thanks for the info so far. Another question... which area of Nursing Education has the most shortage of instructors? Which area of Nursing Education has the most number of instructors? Just from your observations.

-Dan

VickyRN, MSN, DNP, RN

Specializes in Gerontological, cardiac, med-surg, peds. Has 16 years experience. 105 Articles; 5,349 Posts

Thanks for the info so far. Another question... which area of Nursing Education has the most shortage of instructors? Which area of Nursing Education has the most number of instructors? Just from your observations. -Dan

Most shortage of instructors--definitely pediatrics.

Most number of instructors--general medical-surgical.

SarasotaRN2b

SarasotaRN2b

1,164 Posts

I've been reading these threads on the Nursing Educator boards with great interest, and found myself puzzled? Can you go into more detail, Vicky?

thanks in advance!

Most shortage of instructors--definitely pediatrics.

Most number of instructors--general medical-surgical.

BeenThereDoneThat74, MSN, RN

Specializes in Pediatrics. Has 27 years experience. 1,937 Posts

most shortage of instructors--definitely pediatrics.

most number of instructors--general medical-surgical.

so thrilled to hear this! my specialty is peds, and my biggest fear is that i'll be thrown into something i have no experience in (or old experience).

to the op- how would you like to hear that your nursing professor graduated nursing school 2 yrs ago, and went right on to get the ms? don't get me wrong, we need enthusiastic educators, but we also need experienced ones too. i have been a nurse for 10yrs, and i question if that will be enough experience by the time i start teaching. the first year (or two) are spent figuring out how to be a nurse. i too, knew i wanted to teach while i was still in school. i also realized that i would not be ready for quite some time. so i took the slow route to the bsn, (8 yrs!!!) and the somewhat quicker route to the msn (three years by the time i finish). in the interim, i gained valuable experience.

llg

llg, PhD, RN

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development. Has 45 years experience. 13,469 Posts

Instructors can be required to teach in areas in which they have no experience. I disagree with that completely, but know from pesonal experience that it can happen. It happened to me -- which is one of the big reasons why I don't work for a school of nursing anymore.

When I was hired by a school (that will remain nameless -- as will the extremely prominent nursing leader who was my immediate supervisor) -- I was hired to teach within my clinical specialty, normal newborn and NICU, with the knowledge that I would also supervise students on the mother-baby unit. I was promised an 8 week orientation to the mother-baby unit to be spent co-teaching a group of students along with a maternity expert instructor. She would do all the maternity lectures, I would do all the baby lectures. It seemed like a terrific fit and a great opportunity for me to expand me knowledge a little.

After moving across the country to take this job, I arrived on campus to discover that instead of the 8-weeks being buddied with the maternity instructor to learn mother-baby ... I was to spend that 8 weeks taking a group of students to an adult med/surg floor. Me ... who had never worked adult med/surg in my life ... whose last experience on adult med/surg had be 20 years earlier as a student! Then, I had to take the students to the mother-baby unit on which I had never gotten any orientation.

My boss (the internationally prominent nursing leader) was totally unsympathetic and dissappointed in me that I wasn't more of a generalist. She was disappointed that I wasn't a better fit for the position and decided not to renew my contract for the next year. Apparently, she had never read my vita which include 12 years of NICU plus 7 years of graduate school -- but NO adult med/surg and NO maternity.

... and they wonder why there is a faculty shortage!

Because of that experience and similar things I have seen others experience, I think anyone going into teaching at the undergraduate level needs to be prepared to handle just about anything. Also, an instructor needs to supervise the care of multiple students who are assigned to multiple patients. You only learn those kinds of care organization skills by actually practicing as a nurse, being a preceptor, charge nurse, etc. As an undergraduate student, you only care for 1-3 patients at a time. You are not prepared to supervise the care of 8-10 patients.

llg

VickyRN, MSN, DNP, RN

Specializes in Gerontological, cardiac, med-surg, peds. Has 16 years experience. 105 Articles; 5,349 Posts

I've been reading these threads on the Nursing Educator boards with great interest, and found myself puzzled? Can you go into more detail, Vicky?

thanks in advance!

I do not know the reason and have no empirical statistics to back this up--this is only my personal observation. However, the pediatric nursing instructor shortage in my area has become so acute that the BSN program (part of a major university) was willing to accept for pediatric faculty a nurse with only a BSN degree! (Their stipulation was that the pediatric nurse have 15 hours completed towards a Masters of Nursing program).

VickyRN, MSN, DNP, RN

Specializes in Gerontological, cardiac, med-surg, peds. Has 16 years experience. 105 Articles; 5,349 Posts

Instructors can be required to teach in areas in which they have no experience. I disagree with that completely, but know from pesonal experience that it can happen. It happened to me -- which is one of the big reasons why I don't work for a school of nursing anymore.

When I was hired by a school (that will remain nameless -- as will the extremely prominent nursing leader who was my immediate supervisor) -- I was hired to teach within my clinical specialty, normal newborn and NICU, with the knowledge that I would also supervise students on the mother-baby unit. I was promised an 8 week orientation to the mother-baby unit to be spent co-teaching a group of students along with a maternity expert instructor. She would do all the maternity lectures, I would do all the baby lectures. It seemed like a terrific fit and a great opportunity for me to expand me knowledge a little.

After moving across the country to take this job, I arrived on campus to discover that instead of the 8-weeks being buddied with the maternity instructor to learn mother-baby ... I was to spend that 8 weeks taking a group of students to an adult med/surg floor. Me ... who had never worked adult med/surg in my life ... whose last experience on adult med/surg had be 20 years earlier as a student! Then, I had to take the students to the mother-baby unit on which I had never gotten any orientation.

My boss (the internationally prominent nursing leader) was totally unsympathetic and dissappointed in me that I wasn't more of a generalist. She was disappointed that I wasn't a better fit for the position and decided not to renew my contract for the next year. Apparently, she had never read my vita which include 12 years of NICU plus 7 years of graduate school -- but NO adult med/surg and NO maternity.

... and they wonder why there is a faculty shortage!

Because of that experience and similar things I have seen others experience, I think anyone going into teaching at the undergraduate level needs to be prepared to handle just about anything. Also, an instructor needs to supervise the care of multiple students who are assigned to multiple patients. You only learn those kinds of care organization skills by actually practicing as a nurse, being a preceptor, charge nurse, etc. As an undergraduate student, you only care for 1-3 patients at a time. You are not prepared to supervise the care of 8-10 patients.

llg

I am speechless. So sorry this happened to you, llg. Their loss.

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