Diverse Applications of Teaching/Learning Strategies that Influence One's Concept of Spirituality

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Sarah Beckman, MSN, RN1
Cheryl Sorge, MA, RN2
Sanna Harges, MA, RN2
Becky A. Salmon, MS, RN3
1Nursing, Indiana University Purdue University, Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne, IN
2Nursing, Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne, IN
3Nursing Department, Indiana University Purdue University, Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne, IN

Learning Objective 1: Identify teaching strategies that explore spirituality.

Learning Objective 2: Participate in an experiential activity that explores grief, loss, and end-of-life issues.

Spirituality is an integral component of a person’s wholeness that carries implications throughout one’s life with relevance to students, practitioners, and administrators in the health care disciplines, as well as, consumers of health care. Grief, loss, end-of-life issues, and values clarification are all relevant to the concept of spirituality.  A holistic, wellness, and systems framework is found in the Neuman Systems Model which provides the definition of spirituality for these educational endeavors.  Spirituality is challenging to teach, explore, and understand due to its abstract nature, multiple and varied interpretations, and in some cultures, its sensitive nature.  This presentation explores teaching/learning strategies that heighten the participant’s awareness of his/her own spirituality and ultimately contributes to an increased sensitivity to the spiritual needs of others.  The teaching/learning initiatives utilized reflect sound principles of adult learning and promote the development of critical thinking skills.  Facilitators strive to ensure a safe and non-judgmental environment for all activities. Examples of teaching/learning strategies employing the concept of spirituality in undergraduate nursing courses will be examined.  Applications to practice settings will be discussed.  Participants will have opportunities for involvement in select experiential activities.  Participants will be invited to share ideas on applications in various practice settings and/or with people from diverse backgrounds.