Cycles of reflection and challenge: Using sequential blended learning strategies to enhance student understanding of, and transition to, the Nurse Practitioner role in Australia

Rachel Rossiter, Jenny Day

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Aim: This paper describes and discusses the development and implementation of sequential blended learning strategies in one Australian post-graduate nursing program designed to support student transition to the Nurse Practitioner (NP) role. Background: Despite the availability of NP practice standards and role descriptions, the diversity and complexity of NP practice can make it difficult for students commencing post-graduate NP programs to comprehend what ways they need to develop to meet professional expectations. Scholarly critique: This paper examines this contemporary post-graduate education issue. Blended learning strategies provided an opportunity to address the requirements, diversity and complexity of NP practice early in the NP program. Students were confronted with the gap between their current level of competence and NP competence, and supported to plan and travel the transitional and developmental pathway to achieve competence. Conclusion: Working with students from early on in their degree enables them to progressively and more clearly envision the gap between their current level of competence and that required of the Australian NP role. Adopting a sequential blended learning approach is one way to engage students in preparing for their future role. Consideration of design elements integral to blended learning approaches is important, including a need for authenticity and support. Preparing NPs who fully comprehend the nature and scope of their practice is both vital for safety and of strategic importance to the nursing profession. Examples of how to facilitate student understanding of the NP role are needed to inform educational practice.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)159-166
Number of pages8
JournalCollegian
Volume23
Issue number2
Early online date2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2016

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Nurse Practitioners
Nurse's Role
Learning
Students
Mental Competency
Nursing
Graduate Education
Safety

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title = "Cycles of reflection and challenge: Using sequential blended learning strategies to enhance student understanding of, and transition to, the Nurse Practitioner role in Australia",
abstract = "Aim: This paper describes and discusses the development and implementation of sequential blended learning strategies in one Australian post-graduate nursing program designed to support student transition to the Nurse Practitioner (NP) role. Background: Despite the availability of NP practice standards and role descriptions, the diversity and complexity of NP practice can make it difficult for students commencing post-graduate NP programs to comprehend what ways they need to develop to meet professional expectations. Scholarly critique: This paper examines this contemporary post-graduate education issue. Blended learning strategies provided an opportunity to address the requirements, diversity and complexity of NP practice early in the NP program. Students were confronted with the gap between their current level of competence and NP competence, and supported to plan and travel the transitional and developmental pathway to achieve competence. Conclusion: Working with students from early on in their degree enables them to progressively and more clearly envision the gap between their current level of competence and that required of the Australian NP role. Adopting a sequential blended learning approach is one way to engage students in preparing for their future role. Consideration of design elements integral to blended learning approaches is important, including a need for authenticity and support. Preparing NPs who fully comprehend the nature and scope of their practice is both vital for safety and of strategic importance to the nursing profession. Examples of how to facilitate student understanding of the NP role are needed to inform educational practice.",
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AB - Aim: This paper describes and discusses the development and implementation of sequential blended learning strategies in one Australian post-graduate nursing program designed to support student transition to the Nurse Practitioner (NP) role. Background: Despite the availability of NP practice standards and role descriptions, the diversity and complexity of NP practice can make it difficult for students commencing post-graduate NP programs to comprehend what ways they need to develop to meet professional expectations. Scholarly critique: This paper examines this contemporary post-graduate education issue. Blended learning strategies provided an opportunity to address the requirements, diversity and complexity of NP practice early in the NP program. Students were confronted with the gap between their current level of competence and NP competence, and supported to plan and travel the transitional and developmental pathway to achieve competence. Conclusion: Working with students from early on in their degree enables them to progressively and more clearly envision the gap between their current level of competence and that required of the Australian NP role. Adopting a sequential blended learning approach is one way to engage students in preparing for their future role. Consideration of design elements integral to blended learning approaches is important, including a need for authenticity and support. Preparing NPs who fully comprehend the nature and scope of their practice is both vital for safety and of strategic importance to the nursing profession. Examples of how to facilitate student understanding of the NP role are needed to inform educational practice.

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