A nursing educator is very much responsible for the shape that the nursing workforce takes in the future. Nursing students are educated, mentored and made competent by the nursing educator. Thus, nursing educators are responsible for the level of quality of future nursing care and strengthening the field of nursing. The nursing educator works with nursing students in the classroom and practice setting.
The nursing educator brings a number of roles together, including not only that of educator, but also researcher and patient caregiver. Another capacity that the nursing educator fills is that of consultant and communicator with health organizations, government agencies and the community. When public health policy is being created and changed, the expertise of the nursing educator is integral.
A nursing educator needs much clinical experience in order to effectively teach. At a minimum the nursing educator will have a Master of Science in Nursing degree. The settings in which they impart their knowledge primarily include nursing education programs. These can be for diploma, associate’s degree, bachelor’s degree, and different graduate degrees in different fields of nursing. The nurse educator designs, implements, assesses, and revises academic education programs for nursing students and current nurses.
Other areas for potential education by the nursing educator include continuing education and staff development. Education programs for the community, patients and families can take place at senior centers, hospitals, home health clinics and voluntary health organizations. Current nurses may also be educated and mentored by the nursing educator. They may need help in discovering their strengths and weaknesses and how to improve their nursing knowledge and skills.
It is essential for the nursing educator to not only have strong communication skills, but also to stay abreast of the current advances in the ever-changing field of nursing. In order to stay aware of the latest changes in health care, nursing educators will read nursing journals and attend conferences in order to accumulate necessary information.
To become involved as a nursing educator, you will need an advanced nursing degree. The University of Phoenix offers the following online nursing degree programs:
» Bachelor of Science in Nursing (Click for more info)
» Master of Science in Nursing (Click for more info)
» Or see online LPN to BSN, RN to BSN, or general nursing programs