Innovativeness: Teaching Theory and Professional Concepts of Nursing to Junior Level Baccalaureate Nursing Students

Tuesday, 13 July 2010: 4:25 PM

Rosemary Hall, PhD, RN
Nursing, University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies, Coral Gables, FL

Learning Objective 1: The learner will be able to institute innovative teaching strategies for teaching nursing theory and professional concepts.

Learning Objective 2: The learner will measure the outcomes of teaching by instituting a survey rating the positive and negative aspects of the teaching strategies.

Teaching theory and basic concepts of nursing can be challenging due to the abstractness and new dimension of this knowledge. In essence, instructors must create innovative approaches for students to learn and value nursing theory, models, and philosophy.

This presentation will illustrate innovative approaches that were used and were successful to engage beginning junior nursing students to learn and value learning of theory as the basic foundation of nursing. Interactive strategies and required writing assignments were instituted. Interactive strategies:  group exercises and student presentations specific to nursing theories, models, and philosophies, nursing education, ethics, culture, professionalism, evidenced based practice, research, critical thinking, and health care forced students to engage reinforcing content of nursing theory and nursing concepts. The required writing assignments: reflective journaling on topics selected by  them,  their own nursing philosophy, and their selection of a scholarly nursing paper topic on a nursing theory, theorist, or  model allowed student autonomy, stimulated critical thinking , forced the student to do library searches, and write papers following a specific rubric for grading.

An informal survey done rated the innovative approaches. The students stated the interactive discussions kept them actively engaged, forced them to think, ask questions, and do further reading on topics. The writing assignments were generally positive as students were forced to use the critique provided by the instructor to improve their next writing assignments and most importantly, the student valued the application of nursing theory with their patients.

In essence, the innovative strategies provided the instructor the opportunity to stimulate student learning to provide a solid foundation of nursing theory and concepts. This foundation was evidenced as students actively engaged in classroom discussions and readily set up appointments to discuss writing assignments.