Reaching Consensus on Competencies of Nurse Educators in Curriculum Design Using a Delphi Technique

Sunday, 17 November 2013: 11:40 AM

Milena P. Staykova, EdD, APRN, FNP-BC
Department of Nursing, Jefferson College of Health Sciences, Roanoke, VA

Learning Objective 1: Validate the need of competencies for nursing educators in charge of curriculum design

Learning Objective 2: Discuss the results of a research study on competencies of nursing educators in curriculum design

The nurse educator shortage leads researchers to question the role of clinical nurses in the academic field. Many clinical nurses who enter academic settings struggle in their new roles as educators because of unclear expectations and professional training. The urgent demand for graduating more professional nurses puts pressure to the novice nurse educators (NLN, 2002). Given the aging faculty workforce, the nontraditional student population, and the lack of standardized curriculum, the work of the new nurse educator becomes more demanding. Despite pleas from professional nursing organizations for competency-based curriculum and curriculum innovation in nursing education, little empirical research exists about the competencies of nurse educators in designing curriculum. The purpose of the study was to help nurse educators reach consensus about the competencies in designing curriculum. Method: In a mixed method 3-rounds Delphi study, 37 panelists from 13 of 22 community colleges in Virginia  used a validated instrument to determined the importance of 160-statements divided into two categories of Mindset and Skillset and three roles such as educators, scholar, and collaborator. Results: Participants reached agreement on 27 of 34 competencies (79%). Several major themes emerged from the qualitative and quantitative data analysis and were organized according to categories and nurse educator roles.  For example, participants achieved 75.3% mean agreement that MSN is the first professional education degree needed for a competent designer. Conclusions: Competencies development in curriculum design should be divided into basic and advance education with focus on workshops to assess personal needs for ongoing professional development in curriculum.