Mentorship and Novice Nursing Faculty: Working Together for Successful Role Transitioning

Monday, 9 November 2015: 10:40 AM

Azizah Sculley, PhD, MEd, BScN, RN
Florence Myrick, PhD, MN, BSN, RN
Pauline Paul, PhD, RN, RN
Faculty of Nursing, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada

In baccalaureate nursing programs in which context based learning (CBL) is used as a teaching-learning modality, it has been observed that there is a shortage of experienced faculty both in the classrooms and in the clinical settings. This shortage has led to an increasing number of clinicians, frequently with no formal teaching preparation and with little or no teaching experience being hired into the position of faculty lecturer or sessional faculty. Such hiring practices have led to concerns about the mentoring process of these faculty members and their transition to the academic setting. Role transitioning from that of experienced clinician to novice educator is often filled with trepidation and uncertainty. Effective mentoring is pivotal to successful role transitioning of novice faculty. To date, there is a lack of research regarding this mentoring process.

The purpose of this grounded theory study was to examine the process involved in mentoring novice nursing faculty in a large university in Western Canada. Data collection occurred via semi-structured interviews.  In keeping with grounded theory, constant comparative analysis and theoretical sampling were used. Working Together emerged as a dynamic and interactive process that occurred during an effective mentor-mentee relationship.  Fundamental to this process of Working Together which ultimately fostered successful role transitioning for the mentee were four inter-related ambient conditions that included: a) sharing; b) communicating; c) role modeling, and d) supporting. Findings from this study could serve to augment our understanding of the mentoring process and in turn contribute to the promotion of an academic milieu that is nurturing, encouraging, and supportive for novice faculty.