Teaching Strategies for Quality Nurse Practitioner Education

Michelle Beauchesne, DNSc, CPNP


Topics in Advanced Practice Nursing eJournal. 2003;3(4) 

In This Article

Nurse Practitioner Education

Across industries and throughout America, individuals and groups are facing the challenges of stretching the dollar as far as possible to provide healthcare, to educate the future workforce, to preserve jobs, and to secure the future of our country. The economic challenges are real and significant within academia, where unprecedented and ongoing budget cuts have necessitated fiscal discipline across all programs. Nursing education is not exempt from the budget adjustments, adding to the existing burdens of limited resources and declining faculty numbers.

Thirty years ago, nurse practitioner (NP) educators began meeting to discuss curriculum issues and teaching strategies. As an outgrowth of the first meeting of NP educators, the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties (NONPF) was created. Through subsequent years, NONPF has retained a commitment to facilitating ongoing exchange among faculty about ideas and strategies to enhance NP education. The annual meeting provides a forum for the presentation of individual and program strategies, as well as the informal exchange of ideas through faculty networking and dialogue. In April 2004, NONPF will mark the 30th annual meeting of NP educators with a program that will address Visioning for the Future, Celebrating the Past.

NP educators have long used networking and resource sharing to support their efforts in bridging economic constraints and innovation. With resources so limited, NP faculty recognize the benefit in sharing strategies and best practices to maximize the value of their educational efforts. NP educators have many more tools available today, yet it remains a challenge to assess what approaches are most effective for the best outcomes specific to NP students. Why use one teaching strategy when another is more cutting-edge and cost-effective? As technology has evolved, considerable exchange of information has aided faculty in assessing the cost-benefit ratio of developing distance education programs and in determining how to integrate the technology expansion from within healthcare practice into the educational environment. However, this explosion of technological advances has also resulted in the need for careful guidance and detailed information to determine which strategies match the needs of different programs and students.


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