Clinical nurse educators are registered nurses who have obtained extensive experience in the working field before they are able to work at different institutions such as colleges, universities, and health care facility settings to teach the subject nursing. These educators are very essential in the field of nursing for they are the ones who hone and mold the future nurses. Their clinical experience and strong desire to educate students who aspire to become nurses are the important traits that they should possess. Part of their duty is to create, improve, employ and assess various educational curricula to enrich and boost the professional development of registered and student nurses alike. Let us further discuss the details of how to become a Clinical Nurse Educator.
To become a clinical nurse educator, it would require you to have an extensive study about health sciences and at the same time acquiring clinical experience. The first step in this career is to obtain a Bachelor’s degree which is usually four – years in the making and then take the state board exam to become a registered nurse. The state examinations vary from state to state. Licensure is acquired if you are able to pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX – RN). After you have obtained those requirements, the next thing to nurture is your experience in the clinical setting. It may include working at a hospital or medical facility for you to be competent as a nurse educator and would qualify you to cover clinical skills needed in their core curriculum. The next step would be to enroll yourself in a graduate school wherein you will be taking up a Master’s degree. The course of the said degree is specifically designed to introduce nurses to the different teaching strategies and curriculum design theory so that they can be more effective in this profession.
Duties and Skills Requirement
The duties of a clinical nurse educator varies widely because their scope covers designing continuing education programs for present nurses and developing a comprehensive curriculum for student nurses. In the clinical area, these educators assess the skills and knowledge of nursing students in collaboration with the nurses and health team to create vast learning experiences for the improvement and professional growth. On the other hand, in the academic settings, the duty of a clinical nurse educator is providing proper instructions, guide and supervise students, formulate curricula and course outline, assess the learning needs and capacity and document all educational process outcomes. Wherever the setting is, the goal of the clinical nurse educator is to reach out, help, or assist the nurses and student nurses in acknowledging their weaknesses and strengths to develop what is/are lacking in them.
Because this profession is high in demand, a clinical nurse educator is also highly well-paid. Their annual salary is roughly about $60,000 but it depends on the employer, the location where they are working, education credentials, and depth of experience.
Before you realize your dream to enter this profession, you have to assess yourself first because you are going to be a change advocate for those aspiring students who want to become a nurse. You should love teaching apart from anything else so that whatever the situation is, you are effective as an educator and teacher to your co – nurses.