Stephanie Calabrese, RN BSN
October 17, 2008
Nurse Educator in the Staff Education Role
Nurse educators in a healthcare setting serve many roles and have many responsibilities and skills. They are a teacher, a role model, a leader, an educator, a critical thinker, an analyzer, and a mentor. Responsibilities include possessing the knowledge and the ability to facilitate learning, plan appropriate learning experiences and using the nursing process as their guide, know how to assess, plan, implement, and evaluate learning. Since the patient is the most important person in a healthcare setting, nurse educators in a hospital setting concentrate on staff development and continuing education. Nurse educators serve a multifaceted role because they serve as a member of a team within the organization along with all the other roles above.
Nurse educators must be proficient with communication skills, have excellent critical thinking skills, and articulate well. At times, they consult the nurse manager of a specific unit and communicate how they feel new nursing employees are doing with their skills and evaluate competency levels within the healthcare setting. They “design learning experiences and educational programs for the staff with diverse level of ability such as course development, preparing and delivering lectures, developing teaching methods for classes, track attendance, and develop quizzes/tests that will increase the employees’ abilities, thereby enhancing staff efficiency and knowledge” (Beres, 2006, p.143). Nurse educators not only design the learning experiences, they also assess a learners needs and then assist the learners in meeting those goals.
Nurse educators assist the nurse manager on a particular unit, by helping to identify other nurses who can precept new staff or graduates to help “bridge the gap between theory and practice” (Waddell & Dunn,... [continues]
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