Sage Open Nursing
Purpose: To identify characteristics and teaching techniques of effective clinical instructors that can be utilized or implemented to improve the student nurse clinical experience.
Background: The clinical instructor is an integral part of a quality clinical experience. They help students transfer didactic information to the practice setting. The clinical nursing experience is a vital component in the developmental process of the nursing student. Research has been done on this subject, but gaps remain. The need for a more in-depth understanding of students' perceptions of the characteristics and teaching techniques that best aid their comprehension and learning will help instructors to maximize student learning experiences in the practice setting.
Method: This qualitative research study utilized the phenomenological research method. Three open-ended questions were posed to 14 nursing students to identify the characteristics and teaching techniques they believed comprised an effective clinical instructor. Individual interviews were conducted and transcribed interviews were reviewed to identify common themes. Three faculty members provided member checking to prevent bias by reviewing the transcribed interviews for common themes.
Findings: Participants identified four main themes which include a trusting relationship, experience or knowledge, coach, and role model. The students found that they gained more knowledge, developed more critical thinking, and felt more confident with instructors who utilized characteristics and techniques from these four areas.
Conclusion: Clinical instructors play an important role in preparing the student nurse in becoming a competent nurse in the practice setting. This information can be used to provide a foundation in creating an educational opportunity to inform nurse educators in the ways to become a more effective clinical instructor.
Niederriter, Joan; Eyth, David; and Thoman, Joan, "Nursing Students' Perceptions on Characteristics of an Effective Clinical Instructor" (2017). Nursing Faculty Publications. 70.
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